Lectio Divina Found Poetry

Lectio divina is an ancient practice of reading or listening to a selection of scripture in a contemplative and prayerful way. Found poetry is a modern activity to be found in high school classrooms, poetry blogs and on Pinterest. You are invited to combine the two practices to find for yourself a sacred, poetic thread in a biblical text. Read to see, understand and respond to how the selection below is speaking to your heart this day.

Give yourself 30-45 minutes for this practice.

Print this page and cut out the following scripture to paste into your journal.

Mark 10:46-52

46 Then they came to Jericho. As Jesus and his disciples, together with a large crowd, were leaving the city, a blind man, Bartimaeus (which means “son of Timaeus”), was sitting by the roadside begging. 47 When he heard that it was Jesus of Nazareth, he began to shout, “Jesus, Son of David, have mercy on me!”

48 Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet, but he shouted all the more, “Son of David, have mercy on me!”

49 Jesus stopped and said, “Call him.”

So, they called to the blind man, “Cheer up! On your feet! He’s calling you.” 50 Throwing his cloak aside, he jumped to his feet and came to Jesus.

51 “What do you want me to do for you?” Jesus asked him.

The blind man said, “Rabbi, I want to see.”

52 “Go,” said Jesus, “your faith has healed you.” Immediately he received his sight and followed Jesus along the road.


First reading

Take a deep breath and notice where you are sitting. Pay attention to the sensation of your body connecting to where you sit and how what holds you connects you to the earth. How does the light around you illuminate and cast shadows around the room? Are there sounds nearby that are distracting or soothing? 

Read through the scripture slowly, listening with you heart for a word that shimmers for you. This is your anchor word. 

Circle that word.

Pause and breathe deeply.

Second Reading

Read the scripture a second time and circle more words that resonate with the anchor word you first chose. Now you are starting to discern the connective tissue of a message for you.

Read aloud the words you’ve circled.

Breathe deeply.

What is your emerging poem inviting you to consider more deeply?

Third Reading

Read the selected text a third time and circle any remaining words that fill in or complete your poem. 

Slowly black out all other words.

Read your poem aloud.

Is there an invitation for you to understand or do something new in your found poem?