Poems by Sr Katy van Wyk OP

The Call

Come Nearer
Do not be afraid, I have called you by name
I have called you into My presence,
this day….. this moment.Come nearer, take off your shoes
strip yourself of everything that you’ve put on
for this time, this moment, is holy.Here in my Divine Presence I will clothe you with all you need
I will wrap My garment of compassion around you
I will put justice and kindness on your feet
So you’ll walk gently beside my creatures, great and small.I will anoint your head with my fragrant oil
And gently whisper in your ears “be open”I have called you by name,
come nearer so I can put this

blazing coal deep within your heart
that you may burn with love for me
and all that I’ve created
Come nearer,
I’m not only in this flame
I’m not only on the mountain tops
I’m not only in the oceans and rivers or on treetopsI am everywhere….
Within you, around you and everywhere!
And where ever I am, that place is holy
So, come nearer, take off your shoes and just be!
Source of all Life
Creator, Source of all life
Here in your Divine Presence, I stand
Looking back over what has been a time of brokenness,
A time of stretching, illness, challenge,
A time of love, friendship, blessing and healing.

With gratitude, I hold these gifts up to You,
God, strength and Source of all.

When I’m tempted to look at what could have been,
Or look ahead to what might be
You gently draw me back to this present moment ….
Full of Energy
Full of light
Full of life, love and healing.

I give you my body to hold close to you
Breathe your breath into my lungs
Fill my heart with your forgiving love
Fill my soul with your divine energy
Take my feet and ground them into this moment and this sacred space

And in Your time, open all of my senses …
To hear the melody ….. to feel the rhythm
And move along with you into
The dance of life!


God’s call
You called O God
And I said: “here I am, send me”
Then You said:
“Go into yourself and discover your beauty
Go out into the world and discover the beauty of My creation
Go out and see the pain and the hopelessness
And bring healing and hope to My people

Go and teach My little ones, learn from them and become like them
Go celebrate and dance with those of different creed, colour and culture
For I, the Creator and Dancer of this great Life,
Am dancing in and among you”

I went, knowing that I’m not alone
Trusting that I’ll have what I need for the journey

Now God, at the cross road, you called yet again
I stopped right in my tracks,
not sure if it’s really You
not sure if I can once more say:
“here I am, send me”

Why does it now seem so difficult to move into the unknown?
Why do I feel so afraid, so overwhelmed, and so alone?

Reassure me of Your presence
Let me trust once more that I’ll have what I need for the journey
Give me openness to remain in this transitional space
Give me faith and courage to step into the unknown

Give me joy to leap into the dance of life
Give me compassion to hold myself,
Your people and all Your creatures, with reverence and awe
And may the words of Your prophet from of old
burn deeply in my heart as you call me
“To act justly
To love tenderly
And to walk humbly”
With You, God of timeless-ness

The Call
“Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you” (Jeremiah)
When God called,
no response could I make,
for I was not yet
all I could do,
was be in the Presence of Love
and becomeGod continued to touch, to form, to hold,
to enfold and to love me
and thus I knew
The Presence of Love in my childhoodGod called again,
and with youthful enthusiasm I said:
“yes…here I am”
And God said;
“your becoming is not yet complete…
your joy now, is to be a reminder of
Me when I may seem far”
So Love and I engaged in a dance
of one step-forward,
another one back
a pause … a turn here and a leap there,
dancing in the Arms of Love

God called yet again,
and now with the light of innocence
slowly waning
my vision blurred,
for these eyes have seen
too much pain and agony
I held back and said “no, not yet…
perhaps another time”
Love looked at me
with patience and compassion,
and let me be
and sent the Messenger ahead of me
to be there when I’d arrive

Eventually I did arrive –
and with a gentle voice, the Messenger said
“I Am here…your Lover,
if you will let me”
What will I need to do? I wondered
And He spoke – “just follow Me
and go where We send you
We will go ahead of you, lighting your path
We will walk behind you, protecting you
We will walk beside you, loving you
We will carry you when you get tired
We will comfort you
when you feel lonely and afraid”

Ah…I sighed… and placed my hand
in that of the Lover
and with His right hand He reached in
His heart and took out in His hands
Seeds… of hope and joy
of faith and trust
of love and compassion
of courage and humility…
and sowed them as we walked along

“These, He said:
will grow for I will tend them
And should you ever fear and lose heart
Come back on this sacred path
where these seeds
will have grown and blossomed
And where We will always be waiting…
Love and the Lover, for you, Our beloved”

Show me the Way, Lord
I am thus far on my journey
A journey that has taken me
down narrow alley-ways and valleys
along treacherous paths and steep ascents
only to descend to where
I have started – or so it seemedYet, You have been with me
Sometimes next to me
Or behind me – gently shoving me along the way
At times, You have gone ahead of me,
Showing me the way, lighting my wayI have been with Your people
Teaching children, counselling others
Dancing with women, praying together
Visiting lonely, elderly people

I have served on leadership teams
Administering, listening to those who have served
You with their lives – young and old

I have tried and am trying to live a good life
Aware of the abundant blessings I have received
In my family, the church and this Congregation

Now there is a certain restlessness within
Is this enough?
What else am I to learn…to do?
Where am I going?
Who am I and who am I becoming?
What is my purpose here?
Who are You?

Show me how to live these questions
Show me how to live with and in hope
Increase my trust in your presence in our world
No matter how distrusting I may feel of our leaders and governors

Show me how to love, to heal and to be an instrument of peace
Show me the way and give me courage to take one step at a time
Keep me awake and aware
With my eyes wide open to the beauty around me
to the pain in the faces of the well-known and the stranger
Awake to Your voice, Your movement, You call and Your guidance
As You continue to show me the way forward,
inwards and onwards.

Unless you become like little Children
In the dreamtime came the little boy
With sparkling eyes and excitement in his voice
“look what I found”I looked, but what he found was not in his hands
Instead, down he jumped – into the depths of the clear waterDown, he swirled, light as a feather
To the treasure he had found
And I, standing on the brink, gasping for air
Panic-stricken as my eyes get a glimpse
Of the fat ….unknown …. dangerous … eel-like creature

In my panic I called for help, but people just stared
Down into the depth I looked again and there!
Boy and eel-like creature sitting side by side –
Beautiful … harmless and just there
Holding to me the treasure of innocence, spontaneity,
wonder, beauty and transformation
“Unless you become like little children”,
you cannot see the treasures in and around you
“Unless you become like little children”,
you cannot wonder and play and explore the uncharted territories of your soul

“Unless You become like little children”
you cannot enter heaven and heaven cannot enter you
For it is these little ones who hold the keys of the Kingdom!

What is the song you carry in your soul?
Would you dare to sing…..
dare to give voice to it?What is the song you hear in your soul?
Would you dare to enter the silence ….
step into your depth and listen?Do you dare to sing what you hear?
Do you dare to dance what you feel…..
and dare say what you see?Come, let’s walk into the stillness
Put your ear to My ear and tell Me what you hearCan you hear the song I sang into you eons ago?
Will you sing it back to me?Come walk with Me into the great hall
Feel the rhythm, hear the sound and
Sing Me the song I sang to you so long agoCome, take My hand and dare to dance
Come, take the risk
Come, dare to be youDare to be My song
Dare to be My dance and
Dare, just dare to be who you are….

A spark of Me,
known, called, loved and blessed


I am a spark of God’s love
I was known and loved before I came to life
And when sperm and seed met
You smiled and blessed the unity
You embraced this formless shape, blessing it and loving it into being

In the safety of my mothers womb
You nourished, strengthened and loved me
Then in the fullness of time
You send me out into the world …
A world where You’d already gone and awaited my arrival

In this world – I explored and laughed
Fell and cried ….
I knew fear and anxiety
Love and courage ….
Loneliness and despair….
Hope and faith …
And all this time You were there,
Yes, and all this time You are here

How could I forget and how could I be so careless?
How could I suppress this spark and be so casual about my existence?
When all along I’m part of Your divine plan

Forgive me for being so careless
I am because of You and for You
Help me stay in and with You –
And help me to be
A spark for others
A spark of your love!


I believe in the beauty and giftedness
of being a woman
A woman loved
and called into being by God
I also believe
that with and among other women,
We are called to respond creatively and
compassionately to the cry of the world

I believe that the presence
of God’s living Spirit
integrates and transforms me
as I remain open and faithful
to the journey inwards,
downwards and outwards

I believe
that the journey inwards and downwards
also reminds me
of my need to refresh myself constantly
At God’s fountain of love

I believe that melodies arise within us
as we move
in and through each day, and that
the song must be sung in order to be heard

I believe that springs of life are gurgling,
bubbling up, spouting forth and
flowing into the dry crevasses of our lives,
communities, societies and Church,
preparing and soaking the soil
of our hearts for
God’s life-giving and greening seeds

I believe in the ongoing search for Truth,
the truth of who I am,
who I am called to be in this time,
this reality and in this society
I believe that the very Truth
is constantly evolving through
my conscious participation in the unfolding process of life

I believe in the ever-new Cosmic Story,
in the interconnectedness of all that is,
and in the
Cosmic Christ who draws us all into
communion with Him

I believe that the three fundamental principles of diversity,
communion, and interiority are integral
to the life of the cosmic community

I believe I am called and claimed by God
for Religious life as an alternate life-form
I believe that I am called
to live each day to the full,
embracing and sharing the gifts it holds,
living through the challenges and seeing
them as opportunities for growth

I also believe that the passing of each day
brings me ever more deeply into the
mystery of love and truth as
I step towards the more mature years

And I believe
that living each day in the present,
prepares me for my death, the full entrance
into the eternal sea of God’s wonderful light
and all-embracing love

* Inspired by the Springs of Life, inspiration document of King Dominican Sisters

Fiery Woman
You came in the dream-time
Where all is as it is
and nothing is as it seems
You stood there, ablaze
Fire your very presence!What message do you bring?
As you stand there – glistening-shimmering-glowing
in the semi-dark?
Fire your very essence!You stand there on the stage
Surrounded by the orchestra
Where in this space-time they do not seem to see you
For this is the dream-time where all is as it is
And nothing is as it seems

Fiery woman, what do you need to say to me?
As you stand there – so still,
shimmering, glimmering-
in the dull-semi-lit corner of the stage?
Where all is as it as
And nothing is as it seems

Come …sparkle and glow
Come, listen to the music and dance
Come back with me into the dream-time
Where nothing is as it seems
And all is as it is.

Who rolled the stone away?
Quiet lay upon the earth as the morning mist gently
surrounded her, coming towards the tomb,
fragrant oils held close to her heartAlas! An empty tomb greeted her
the rock rolled away but no one in sight
grief-stricken and overcome by fear ….. she wondered…
who could have rolled the stone away?But silence was all she heard and the stone was all she saw
then the stone spoke:
“ While I was guarding the tomb
darkness and silence were my only companions except of course for the
Body that was lying there, wrapped in white cloths –

A few days later, I heard something …felt something
The earth shook and my whole being trembled as
God breathed into the tomb
The earth shook and my whole being trembled as
God breathed into the tomb…

Then – off came the tightly-wound cloths and there
He stood – in radiant splendour!
Another tremor … as Mother Earth opened up her womb
And brought forth those held inside her
Then the angels and everyone, gathered around Him
Singing their Alleluia, clapping and dancing for joy –

For you see, it was God who rolled the stone away
With just a Breath – and there, right past me
In radiant glory, walked the Son”

As the golden sun shot laser beams across the earth
melting away the mist and bringing all creation to life
the woman’s eyes were opened –
she heard her name being called – and still with disbelief
she looked again
And heard that she was to go and proclaim the good news

And with a spring in her step and joy in her heart
Mary of Magdala went…

Two women meeting
One young, the other – old
Both touched by graceTwo women meeting
Both of them graced to
carry within them new lifeTwo women meeting
Blessed by each other by the
Ones nestled within their wombs

Two women meeting
Blessed by each other
Inviting us to share in the miracle and the mystery

Two women meeting
One young, the other – old
Both drawn by the Mysterious Encounter
Both send forth to proclaim the Good News!