One of our favorite Homeschooling traditions is “Poetry Teatime”, so we thought we would explore some Hungarian poetry. We discovered one that would be good to share, by the poet Sándor Petőfi. This poem is called “MI HASZNA, HOGY A CSOROSZLYA”. At first read, it’s a poem about someone who implores the other not to look their way unless love is involved. As with any words about Love, we find an opportunity and expression that reminds us of the cold-hearted world we want to reveal the warmth of God’s Love unto.
Mi haszna, hogy a csoroszlya
Az ugart fölhasogatja?
Hogyha magot nem vetsz bele,
Csak kóróval leszen tele.
Hej kisleány, pillantatod
Mélyen a szivembe hatott;
Mint a földet a csoroszlya,
De hiába hasogatta,
Azért csak bú terem rajta!
Ültesd bele szerelmedet,
Úgy nő rózsa tövis helyett.
An English translation (made to rhyme):
What is the use of ploughing earth,
Without the seed that springs to birth?
Neglecting this, but weeds will grow
And all your work for naught will go.
Believe me, fairest, sweetest rose,
Beneath thy glance my poor heart glows:
And, as the plough the ground upheaves,
Thy glance my heart in furrows leaves.
Thy glance in vain cuts deep my heart,
But sorrow from its depths will start;
Except thou sow with love, and fair,
Sweet scented roses will bloom there.
Psalm 127:1 reminds us “Unless the Lord builds this house, those who build it labor in vain.” We know that 1 John 4:7-8 reminds us “God is Love”. With these in mind, we know that unless the Love of God is involved in what we endeavor, weeds will grow and the work will be “all for naught”.
Even now, it’s a great reminder. As we look forward to the weeks ahead: Thanksgiving, Christmas decoration, gift giving, charity, Advent, and all sorts of Christmas celebrations. Before we step forward into each of these, may we spend time in the presence of Jesus. May we invite the Love of God to dwell in and through us, so that we are not simply “doing things”, but bearing the image and Love of God into a world in need of such warmth to bloom.
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(Disclaimer: We don’t actually know Hungarian yet. The translation above might be terribly inaccurate. Nevertheless, the truth found in the invitation as given remains.)