Earth Day 2021

What we need now is sacrament:
the transubstantiation of microplastics,
the epiclesis of climate
calling down the Spirit
on the storms and droughts
and strung-out chaos
the shoddy sky keeps tripping on.

we need confessionals crammed
with alarm clocks to rouse us
to the full stature of our sins--
slouching, scoliotic giants
who (fi, fie, fo, fum)
smell the blood
of future generations and factory farm animals
and all their siblings
stretched out razor thin on the chopping block.

we need baptism by the billions--
every blessed head anointed by pure
precious water and christened child
of streams, rivers, lakes and seas.

before it's too late we need last rites--
the sacred smelling salts
to slap our lungs and faces out of our lethal swoon
and coax hope from the brink
of drowning in broken heights
back to grounded, honest work.

matrimony we most need--
loves wedded indissolubly:
Earth and earthlings bound so tight
that no man-made corrosive
could worm in between.

we need holy orders--
we've proved too unruly to command ourselves;
so when heaven thunders
may we with strong, trained faith reply
"How high?"


Greg Kennedy, SJ is assigned to the spiritual exercises ministry at the Ignatius Jesuit Centre in Guelph, Ontario. Novalis will publish Greg's book - “Reupholstered Psalms” - on March 1, 2020.

  • Lisa Calzonetti
    Posted at 06:53h, 22 April Reply

    A perfect earth day lament wrapped in hope…..with gratitude.

  • Joy Powell
    Posted at 08:23h, 22 April Reply

    How and where can I get a copy of Reupholstered Psalms

  • Pauline Lally Lally
    Posted at 09:05h, 22 April Reply

    Congratulations!!! What a way to start the day. Thanks so much, Greg.

  • Greg Kennedy
    Posted at 13:16h, 22 April Reply

    Through Novalis Publishers:

  • Max Oliva
    Posted at 13:40h, 22 April Reply

    I love this! Well composed. Thank you.

  • Rosemary McGinn
    Posted at 15:43h, 22 April Reply

    Greg,wonderful Poem for Earth Day. I truly appreciated your Earth Story with Nan.I do hope your book is published soon.Gratefully Rosemary McGinn C.S.J.

  • Kate Crawford
    Posted at 17:11h, 22 April Reply

    Beautiful! I shared this with the Council of Huron Shores United Church in Grand Bend, Ontario this afternoon. Very much appreciated!

  • Caroline Maloney
    Posted at 00:55h, 23 April Reply

    So insightful and rich with “the sacramental”! Thank you!

  • Roy Fanthome
    Posted at 02:36h, 24 April Reply

    Thanks for sharing your day. Lord. Help us to take one day at a time

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