MAPS and DRAGONS (Poem by Sister Clarita Felhoelter OSU)

“When the old cartographers inscribed,

“There be dragons here.”

Did their wrinkled faces crinkle

Eyes twinkle as they thought of

Sailors calling, “Steer clear, steer clear,

There be dragons here!”

Or were they sure they’d lure

Some brazen tar to dare the bar

And sail a league beyond

Then call to shore, “Steer here, steer here,

There be dragons near! Oh,

We cannot miss the chance, oh, hear!”

These old map makers, did they create

The creatures of the deep for fun

Or know that faith and love can die of fear

And shriveled hope revive its cheer

If voices call into the deep

And so implied with pixie pen,

‘Sail out, sail out, young tads, with

Cheer and call your comrades,

‘Join me here; the map shows clear

That there be dragons near!’ ”


SOURCE: Sister Clarita Felhoelter,  An Ursuline Sister   In  “Even the stuff of Earth: A collection of Poems.” 1998.

One thought on “MAPS and DRAGONS (Poem by Sister Clarita Felhoelter OSU)”

  1. This is one of my favorite poems from the collected edition of poems by Sister Clarita. She was the facilitator of our Poetry group that met weekly at the Ursuline Retirement home in Louisville, Ky.
    Sr. Clarita was a most cherished community member by all who knew her–myself included.
    This poem is one that I particularly cherish because of its humor, powerful images and the truth which it embodies. The one sentence that is of especial interest to us is the following:

    “…Or know that faith and love can die of fear
    And shriveled hope revive its cheer..”

    When we are depressed we know about fear, anxiety and loss. It is that hope in us that is revived by those of us in the fellowship of Depressed Anonymous, who by our recovering hope, share our stories of sailing into the safe harbor of calmer shores.

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