Book review by Abbess Christine Valters Paintner. Hildegard of Bingen: A Poetic Journey

Affirming words from the Abbess Christine Valters Paintner   PhD

who lead the enriching 3 weeks Pilgrimage

of walking in Hildegard of Bingen’s footsteps in the Benedictine Way

which I was a part of with 30 other pilgrims in Autumn 2013

Christine’s latest book  Dreaming of Stones is a very reflective selection of poetry

 

“Hildegard of Bingen was a woman of extraordinary creative expression and this book approaches her wisdom through the gift of poetry which allows us to move into a more intuitive space. It is a book to slow us down, that invites us to ponder, and calls us to follow Hildegard toward a growing greenness in our lives.”

—Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, author of 12 books on spirituality including Illuminating the Way: Embracing the Wisdom of Monks and Mystics

Blessings on your project!

Warmly, Christine

Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE

Abbey of the Arts:

Transformative Living through 

Contemplative and Expressive Arts

 

Book Review by Dr.Annette Esser. Hildegard of Bingen: A Poetic Journey

Annette Esser  in September 2013 speaking to a group of pilgrims including myself.

Annette’s Book Review of Hildegard of Bingen: A Poetic Journey

What an oeuvre! I love this work. What a superb and elaborates work!
These nine books of poems by Australian poet Colleen Keating tell Hildegard‘s life story plus the ones of her intimates, especially Jutta, Volmar and Richardis in such a stunning way that the reader feels put into the landscape and ambience of the Hildegard’s Medieval cloister world and the most intimate feelings and sensations of her time in the 12th century.
The author presents here her work of 20 years of poetic search and thoughtful reflection.
Myself, having done research on Hildegard as well, since early 1990 in Germany and America, I have never encountered elsewhere such an amazing poetry on Hildegard’s whole life story that even seems to have a grasp on the German language, culture and nature.Self-evidently, the author follows new historical insights after the late translation of the “Life of Lady Jutta“, even though some of her story-telling is still in dispute in the Hildegard research (such as the place of her birth; the site of the Disibodenberg women‘s cell;  the questions whether Hildegard also counts as the foundress of Eibingen; and the question whether the number of “four missionary journeys“ is rather a construct). Yet, as a spiritual Hildegard scholar, I wish to stress that fictional writing is sometimes not just more inspired but also more true than merely accounting historical facts.
Thus, I highly recommend reading, tasting and meditating on this poetic journey on Hildegard of Bingen. It is inspired by deep knowledge and wisdom.
In short: I wish we could translate these poems from the other side of the earth also back into Hildegard‘s own German language. They belong to this world and they belong here.
Dr. Theol. Annette Esser, Foundress and President of the Scivias Institute for Art & Spirituality in Germany, Initiator of the new Hildegard Pilgrimage Way from Idar-Oberstein to Bingen, author of „Die Kirchenlehrerin Hildegard von Bingen“ and „Pilgerbuch Hildegard von Bingen Pilgerwanderweg“ (the Hildegard Pilgrimage Book)

Colleen and Annette 4 years later in March 2017 on my third pilgrimage to Bingen.

Dr. Annette Esser Founder and President of the Scivias Institute for Arts and Spirituality , Germany  met us and invited us to spend time in the room. speaks especially of the wonderful Trinitarian Mandala of Hildegard. 

It was 27 years after Scivias her first book was began. This mandala  is from LIBER DIVINORUM OPERUM – The Book of Divine Works (1163-1170)

Hildegard heard “ . . I, the fiery life of Divine essence am aflame beyond the beauty of the meadows. I gleam in the waters. I burn in the sun, moon and stars, With every breeze , as with invisible life that contains everything, I awaken everything to life “

Rupertsberg was a crag at the confluence of the Nahe and the Rhine, in Bingen am Rhein. It is named for Saint Rupert of Bingen, son of Bertha of Bingen. It is notable as the site of the first Abbey founded by Saint Hildegard of Bingen, in 1150, after leaving the monastery at Disibodenberg. 

She acquired the land from Hermann, dean of Mainz, and Count Bernhard of Hildesheim, plus various smaller gifts. The convent chapel was consecrated by Archbishop Henry of Mainz in 1152.  

Hildegard built a thriving community of women with gardens of healing plants  and an Apothecary  to prepare the herbs and plants for healing.

There is thought that she had up to 100 sisters living and studying and working there as a community

The ruins of the monastery were  rediscovered in the work done to make way for a railway track in 1857.

PRESS RELEASE: Hildegard of Bingen by Colleen Keating

It might have taken nearly 1000 years, but against all adversity
this woman claims her place in history.

 A Poetic Journey with Hildegard of Bingen . 

Marvel at her tenacity and fragility.

Feel you are present with this amazing woman’s story.

Critics acclaim:  

 ‘What an oeuvre! What a superb and elaborate work.’ 

Hildegard’s life sings and dances across the pages
of this engaging harmony of her works . . .’

The reader feels put into the landscape and ambience
of Hildegard’s medieval cloistered world’

Learn how this famous composer and musician was silenced. 

How her Abbey was forbidden to play music or sing for nearly a year.

Experience her oneness with the earth and its importance to our wellbeing

‘The earth is our mother’ she would say,
she is mother of all for in her is the seed of all’

Engage with her study of plants for health and her holistic healing.  Hear her say to you:

‘Feast your eyes on the green ,a thousands shades of green,  a healing colour,
let it heal you with its greening power, rooted in the sun. 

Encounter the  joy and pain of the deep friendships in her life. 

Capture the beauty of the Rhine Valley in all its seasons, where Hildegard lived out her 82 years.

Endure the hard times where she, as a woman of the 12th century, hits the brick walls of patriarchy, ignorance, hardship and struggles to be heard.

If you already thought you knew Hildegard you will be all the more there as she creates her life journey. 

“It is a book to slow us down, inviting us to ponder and calls us to follow Hildegard towards a growing greenness in our lives”

If you do not know Hildegard you are in for a treat.

Can be ordered through all good book stores or from the publisher 

www.ginninderrapress.com.au 

or 

Amazon Books Australia, UK, USA

Colleen Keating / Hildegard of Bingen: A poetic journey

Back Poetry

 

 

 

 

Hildegard of Bingen: Poetic Journey available now

Ginninderra  Press

www.ginninderrapress.com.au

Internationally on AMAZON BOOKS

Colleen Keating / Hildegard of Bingen: 

A poetic journey

Poetry

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‘Hildegard of Bingen was a woman of extraordinary creative expression and this book approaches her wisdom through the gift of poetry which allows us to move into a more intuitive space. It is a book to slow us down, that invites us to ponder, and calls us to follow Hildegard towards a growing greenness in our lives.’ – Christine Valters Paintner, PhD, REACE, Abbey of the Arts

‘Hildegard’s life sings and dances across the pages of this engaging harmony of her works, set out in this poetic journey that commences at the twilight of her life and rewinds back through the lens of time. Hildegard’s many gifts – including her charm – are expertly embedded. A very enjoyable and fascinating read.’ – Dr Christine Cameron 

‘Colleen Keating brings to this impressive collection some very fine, positively Hildegardian qualities – a robust earthiness, an inner strength, a passion for justice and a fiery light.’ –
Dr Mary O’Connell

‘What an oeuvre! What a superb and elaborate work! These nine books of poems by Australian poet Colleen Keating tell Hildegard’s story in a stunning way. The reader feels put into the landscape and ambience of Hildegard’s medieval cloistered world. Thus I highly recommend reading, tasting and meditating on this poetic journey with Hildegard of Bingen.’ –
Dr Annette Esser, Founder and President of the Scivias Institute for Art and Spirituality, Germany.

978 1 76041 766 6, 248pp

Versions

White Pebbles Haiku Group

White Pebbles

 

Convenor: Beverley George

In the winter poem many of us are familiar with, Stopping by Woods on a Snowy Evening , the poet stops on the darkest evening of the year, ‘to watch his woods fill up with snow’.  Like the poet, Robert Front, the White Pebbles Haiku Group stopped to watch the winter scene unfolding at  the Gosford /Edogawa Japanese Gardens on the Central Coast this past Saturday 15th June just a week out from the dark and shortest day of the year (Winter Solticies this year June 20/21st )

We all look forward  to our meetings and our winter ‘stopping’ was no exception.

This is our second winter walk together. ; with Beverley George our leader, present were Verna Rieschild, Marilyn Humbert, Maire Glacken. Samantha Hyde, Colleen Keating with a heart-felt apologies from Gail Hennessy and Kent Robinson.  

We began our morning with a welcome coffee and catch-up in the cafe sharing  some newly published work and thoughts from  our ‘homework,’  – a handout that Beverley emailed earlier to help us prepare.

 

 

We spent about forty minutes contemplatively moving around the garden, walking, sitting, pondering, jotting down thoughts and ideas for haiku writing;  Today the cheeky plowers were busy, their call ringing out continuously. Lingering leaves from the maple trees were  drifting down  many children were feeding the the koi , ducks were active catching most of the food and the light playful nature of the children reminded us winter is only a season not an age. 

Some of the group sat in the open tea room overlooking the white pebble beach, Some took advantage of sitting in the winter sun under the climbing wisteria. 

After our ginko  (season walk) we  are privileged,  each visit to enjoy a quiet working space in the Art Gallery and we gathered at the round table to share our writing and work sheets. 

 

 

Beverley  introduced the group to Haiga  inspiring us with her beautiful  greeting cards. We had all done our homework which was to bring a winter scene and our haiku to go with it  and at our sharing time it was enlightening to discuss our work . Next meeting we will continue to work with more haiga.

We marvelled at the rich and varied takings from our winter observations.  We are encouraged and affirmed by our sharing.   We left inspired in our haiku writing and look forward to our spring meeting Saturday 14th September 2019.

Just one final observation since our Autumn meeting  a new gengo (era) has been declared with the new reigning Emperor.  Reiwa was announced and  is based on the Manyo-shin – Japan’s oldest Anthology of Poems. It means that culture can grow when people sincerely care about each other. What beautiful sentiment  and hope for our world. 

Some stayed to enjoy the choices from the delicious lunch menu in the cafe.  

Colleen Keating  ( White Pebbles Haiku Group)

 

Les Murray Memorial at the State Library

 

An Absolutely Ordinary Rainbow

The word goes round Repins,
the murmur goes round Lorenzinis,
at Tattersalls, men look up from sheets of numbers,
the Stock Exchange scribblers forget the chalk in their hands
and men with bread in their pockets leave the Greek Club:
There’s a fellow crying in Martin Place. They can’t stop him.

The traffic in George Street is banked up for half a mile
and drained of motion. The crowds are edgy with talk
and more crowds come hurrying. Many run in the back streets
which minutes ago were busy main streets, pointing:
There’s a fellow weeping down there. No one can stop him.

The man we surround, the man no one approaches
simply weeps, and does not cover it, weeps
not like a child, not like the wind, like a man
and does not declaim it, nor beat his breast, nor even
sob very loudly—yet the dignity of his weeping

holds us back from his space, the hollow he makes about him
in the midday light, in his pentagram of sorrow,
and uniforms back in the crowd who tried to seize him
stare out at him, and feel, with amazement, their minds
longing for tears as children for a rainbow.

Some will say, in the years to come, a halo
or force stood around him. There is no such thing.
Some will say they were shocked and would have stopped him
but they will not have been there. The fiercest manhood,
the toughest reserve, the slickest wit amongst us

trembles with silence, and burns with unexpected
judgements of peace. Some in the concourse scream
who thought themselves happy. Only the smallest children
and such as look out of Paradise come near him
and sit at his feet, with dogs and dusty pigeons.

Ridiculous, says a man near me, and stops
his mouth with his hands, as if it uttered vomit—
and I see a woman, shining, stretch her hand
and shake as she receives the gift of weeping;
as many as follow her also receive it

and many weep for sheer acceptance, and more
refuse to weep for fear of all acceptance,
but the weeping man, like the earth, requires nothing,
the man who weeps ignores us, and cries out
of his writhen face and ordinary body

not words, but grief, not messages, but sorrow,
hard as the earth, sheer, present as the sea—
and when he stops, he simply walks between us
mopping his face with the dignity of one
man who has wept, and now has finished weeping.

Evading believers, he hurries off down Pitt Street.

from
The Weatherboard Cathedral, 1969

I have let Les Murray speak for himself. And at the memorial they let his poetry speak for him. He was an excellent poet as the above poem shows. Many of us honoured him on Wednesday. It was a very special memorial for the poet Les Murray who died on 29th April 2019.and a fitting venue for his memorial.

It was held in the famous reading room at the State Library in the old Mitchel Library section. Only twice before has this famous beautiful room been used for memorials and that was for  the famous poet Henry Lawson (about 1922)and Mary Gilmore (about 1962)  now 2019 for Les Murray.

Listen to Les Murray read this poem (MP3)

Carried on the Wings of Time by Thomas Keating Jones

Congratulations to my Grandson Thomas, a wonderful young poet who received Highly Commended Award at the recent prestigious  Myall Creek  Memorial Day Poetry Competition.

This is the second year he has been awarded  a prize at at this poetry competition.

The Friends of Myall Creek Committee invite all school children from years K to 12 to participate in its annual ‘THOUGHTS AND DREAMS’ competition. The theme this year?

         ‘Living Lingo … International Year of Indigenous Languages’

CARRIED ON THE WINGS OF TIME.

by Thomas

As Languages fall through the air,

carried on the winds of time,

some fade, disappear,

become echoes of the way it was . . .

an echo we struggle to hear,

as we work on how it should be.

All the languages new and old hold power.

People learn and differ with them.

It is the lyrical key to the vault of volumes of knowledge,

kept in the magic of the voice,

in the retelling,

like a spell to conjure

…to learn.

You have to explore and engage

to find

in language is hope,

preservation

protection

tradition.

We need to speak out,

to be heard.

to keep it alive…

so life is not lost in translation.

Last year Thomas received a book voucher and an Australian book.

We are awaiting this years award.

Here is last years poem by Thomas.

Little Miss G and her first poem

My Rainbow

My rainbow is colourful

red green yellow blue orange

It has white fluffy clouds

I wish I could stand on the rainbow and dance

Little Miss G  sometimes called Bridgie for short gave  me her first beautiful poem to decorate my wall. She was so excited and of course I am proud of my little 4 year old, especially the way she looks after her baby brother and helps her Mummy every day.

#Edi The Adventure of my School Shoes

The Adventure of my  School Shoes

by Edison with a little help from his Mum, Jessica

Everything was packed.
We left straight after school, not even time to get changed.
We travelled to the farm where we met my cousins.
When we arrived the adventures begun.
But oh no! My mum has forgotten my shoes.
My school shoes would have to come on the adventures with me.
Most school shoes would have been kicked off into a dark cupboard and forgotten about for the weekend.
Not my shoes, they went bike riding, climbing, running. They played sports, they collected fire wood and kept warm by the fire.

They collected mud and got washed in the fresh water rivers.
Boy, did these shoes have a good weekend away camping.


They travelled back home with the adventures still showing.
But like Darcy and I, once they had a bath (and a polish from Dad)

all that was left were the memories.
On Tuesday as I walk into school nobody will know but us, the adventures my shoes and I have shared.

  

#Edi  writing his story,  with school shoes cleaned and ready for school. Thanks Dad.

#Edi with his brother and a cousin