Quaker meeting for worship for business

The clerk’s pen moves across the page
as we sit around her, watching in silence.
Our thoughts, our agreement
are coalescing in her consciousness
and then they are transmitted down
through her arm and hand
into these tiny complex movements
into these significant marks left upon the page.

Here is the scratching of the quill
the incising of the clay tablets
the painting of the cave wall.

Here is a moment from the swirl of the world
captured in time, set down
a clue from the past to study in the future.

Spirit moves through us always:
we can shape it in accord with love
in this moment, as best we can.

Our moving fingers write, and having writ
we move on.



In Quaker meetings for business, minutes (decisions) are drafted at the time, so that everyone can agree them. I find it soothing to sit with the others in silence while the clerk writes out the words which will be read back to us in a few moments. It encourages me to be in this moment, with my friends, while the unknown awaits us in the next moment. The clerk shapes the minute with her fingers and the pen, but all of us have a choice about how we shape any moment as it unfolds into our lives.

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