St. Innocent of Alaska Monastery
9452 Hazelton, Redford, Michigan


Beauteous sunset

Awesome spectacle

Splendor unsurpassed

Power overwhelming

Transcendent vision


Painful sunset

How dare you be so beautiful

When there is so much pain

In our mortal realm

And so little joy or hope


Painful beauty

You flash the painful

Mirror of truth at us

Your rosey fingers

Are accusing fingers

That point at the lack of beauty

In our self-seeking

Violent, suffering world


Painful sunset

You mock us

With your beauty true

Mock our glittering



Synthetic lives


Painful sunset

What right have you

To radiate with such beauty and delight

When humans daily endure

The famine of truth and beauty


Painful beauty

Go away ---

Leave us with our comfortable

Gray gloom

And our unquestioning

Unquesting murky skies

Lest the glorious prism

Of celestial color

Reveal to us

With painful truth

The prisons of our own minds

The dungeons of our own lives


No, stay

Painful beauty

We need your renewing image

Of life as it might be

If we could but fill our lives

With beauty such as yours

Stay and ever remind us

And give us hope

That we might yet

Open and expand our minds

With the prism of Truth and Beauty

And become Real

And become Beautiful

Like You

Beauteous sunset


By Sister Ioanna
St. Innocent Monastic Community,
Redford, MI

From: DANCING in the PRESENCE, published by Firebird Videos, Audios & Books