Monday, December 2, 2013

Return to Poetry



And when we return to poetry
Will the lyrical voices rise
To the occasion or sink
In the cynicism of a wonderless world
Because our hymns are no longer holy
And our praises lack a center
When we return to beauty
Will the artists forget their brushstrokes
And will the paint continually
Drip continual streaks of anger and apostasy
When we hold out our hands for bread
Will we receive a scorpion?

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Call of the Wild



I was not thinking of you
At the sink where my foot itched
And I lost track of my work
I was thinking of the call of the wild
And how dogs can’t hear it nowadays
Because the sirens are too loud
Also my foot was itchy
Perhaps it had found the mosquito
That kept my mother awake two nights in a row
Perhaps it had found other denizens
Of my bedroom walls that once held you in sleep
Only I didn’t want to think of that
And maybe the call of the wild is overrated
The adventure perhaps is learning to love
And to be loved
And maybe making a civilization
Is truly the frontier
In thinking of not thinking of you
You swam to the front of my brain
I had to blink to hold you in
To realize the adventure of you
The wild calls
And I have grown more serious

Thursday, September 12, 2013

Yes

We look, I said, in love
I said, look, we look really in love
I said the day the wind whistled
And the sand sung in biting notes
Against my legs climbing
Laborious after your legs
We look really in love, I said
You said, that is convenient, you said
That’s very convenient
And what about you, once again
Your voice as warm and strong
As your body holding me
Out of the stinging sands
Taking the lash upon your own back
What about your hands being so large
And this token so small and significant
What about this moment?
What about forever?
And I was wrong when
I didn’t think I would cry
But you are windswept, warm, and wild
And bravely contained in this man
This hand
This token
This day
I said, yes, I said
Yes

Monday, July 8, 2013

Fellowship



I’ve forgotten the Christ in me
That words are droplets of blessings
If spoken in due season
That love can be communicated
Through talk of God
Instead I might say
That was a great sermon
And then quickly change the subject
I’ve left behind the reason
For not forsaking the gathering together
Lost the gospel in the gossip
And The Word in the words


   Written in response to a post from the Gospel Coalition that took Christians to task for not using fellowship time to really dig in deep with the sermon and with each other. 

Thursday, June 6, 2013

Contemporary Crap Museum



Yet how would you fare if I told you how I really felt
As I pasted feather upon evasion upon feather
And if I told you, boy-wonder of the art world
That what you work for means nothing
When it is called art to string together empty words
And beat a drum, naked
And all of the bared bodies from which I’ve averted my gaze
How can I tell you everything here is stupid?
When you look so hopeful in the face of this hopelessness
I could probably light this place on fire
And have more impact for Truth and Beauty
Than this whole museum
Instead I mumble half statements
And hot glue glass pebbles to cardboard
The fun of playing at the craft table
Is almost worth my four dollars, but
I regret the one I donated

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

I Shall Die of Having Lived – A Book Poem




Death Comes for the Archbishop

To live! To live! exist be damned
To dwell inside the great I Am
So at the end of life you may
Say I have lived my life away
To view the past with little shame
And see your friendships just the same
To understand your trial here
As fire refining, making pure
So at the end of life you may
Know that you’ve lived your life away

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Writing Prompt: Use These Three Words: Mint, Spare Change, and Confetti

     Please resist pointing out that "spare change" is two words. I already know this, and I didn't make up the prompt. I did; however, create something incredibly ridiculous out of it:



     “Hey do you have any spare change?” I turned to see an earnest young androgynous face peering out from under an overlarge hood. I muttered something about not carrying cash and began to walk away. “How about a mint?” I stopped in the midst of my escape. “A mint?” I asked.
“Yeah, see, I’m going to this interview downtown and I was told to bring a mint, some spare change, and some confetti.”
     I raised a brow. “I don’t believe you,” I said peering deep into the hood. “Why would your future employer ask you to bring confetti to an interview?”
     The face in the hood looked down at the sidewalk for a while, “I’m trying to be a magician,” he muttered. I must have continued looking skeptical because he came a little closer and whispered, “I feel like I’m David Copperfield reincarnated.” I didn’t object by saying David Copperfield was still very much alive. I frankly thought this young person was a little out of his mind. I decided to strike what I felt was a good balance and handed the young man some confetti in a little baggie. I was on my way to clown class and happened to have an extra bag in my pocket.
     His face lit up. “Hey thanks!” he said, “No one ever has confetti these days.”
“It’s hard to come by,” I said, “use it well.”
     He stared at me for a long time, too long I felt. “Why do you have this?” he said in a tone that conveyed that he trusted me about as far as he could throw me. “Listen, kid,” I said, “in times like these it is best to count your blessings and not look a gift horse in the mouth.” As soon as I used the old fashioned catch phrases I knew that if the kid was working as a free lance sniffer, he’d be onto me. There was a tense moment where we both sized each other up, but eventually the kid pocketed the bag of confetti and nodded slowly. I nodded back and he turned and walked down the street, hunched up against the cold protected by that ludicrously big coat.
     As he walked away I felt a little nervous. What if I’d given my confetti to a complete stranger who was just going to squander it? Lately the Anti-Entertainment industry had been cracking down pretty hard on confetti users. It wasn’t illegal yet, but you could still face severe ostracizing if you used it in front of the wrong people. Clowning wasn’t easy. I had already lost one apartment lease over it. My landlady tried to say it was because she saw me smoking inside, but I knew better. Plus, the kid could have been an agent, and I wouldn’t even know until I was suddenly struck from behind and arrested for some trumped up charge. I could not handle that in front of my co-workers. Especially Peanuts. That guy was such a jerk.
     I kicked at a puddle and immediately regretted it as the cold water seeped through my mesh tennis shoe. It was going to be a long day.


Wednesday, April 10, 2013

How To Write of Love



It is easier to write the sadness
The dark you cannot understand
The heartbreak and mourning
It is easier to become cynical
And let your poems flow like tears
Down your page
But what can a poet in love tell you
What words can she say
That do not hint of mawkishness
That will tender the hearts
Of even the deepest cynics
I still write
But lately it has been slow thoughts of love
Not the pain of brokenness
That the broken world knows too well
But the giddiness and the skip-to-my-lou
For you, dear reader
I attempt to not shove
The candy coated cupcakes cast up as words of love
But I want to whisper the name of my beloved
Into every ear that hears me
And understands me not
Please do not think I’ve stopped my writing
Because I’m dizzy with joy
I’m just trying to relate
The pure unadulterated joy of late
Love rising like the sun in an exultation of birdsong
But there, I’ve dipped into silliness
And how can I tell my fellow mortals
Of a glimpse inside of heaven
Unless they see it with their own eyes
My eyes unclose his love
And I still cannot believe I’m attempting to tell you
What transport is mine
What all the hardship of my short and coddled life
Has fashioned me into
Something he wants for forever
And forever, dear reader, is long
And long will I write
Trying to understand how to be so happy and beautiful
In a sad and sinful world
God lets in crepuscular heaven glances
And sometimes they shine on our heads.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Writing Prompt: It Seems to be Broken

So, I was following this Writing Prompt website that gave you a phrase or an idea that you were supposed to write 500 or so words on, and one of them was "It seems to be Broken." This is what I did:




He peered over the edge of the bed. “It seems to be broken,” he stated matter of factly, as if Koala had not been around my whole life. I covered my eyes with my hands and laid back on my pillow. “Please dad,” I whispered, “can you just check again?” He reached down. “Don’t!” I screamed. He looked searchingly at me. “I don’t want to see it if it’s broken.” He looked over at me lying there and looked vaguely concerned. “I’ll just get rid of it then,” he said, “close your eyes.” I closed my eyes for a long time, but when I finally opened them, the room was empty. Two people had walked out of my life forever, and I only cried over one of them. It wasn’t Dad.
I was thinking about that moment from my childhood as Maria droned on and on above her spaghetti bolognaise. I believe she was telling me about her horrible day at the studio or something like she usually does. Our conversations have become so standardized. I’m pretty sure I could recite the entire thing without her being there. The hum of voices all around us seemed to serve as the background chorus for her complaints. My eyes wandered over to the next table where a young couple sat in a big puddle of disgusting love. His hand was on the table palm upward, and she was tracing lines and squiggles across his hands. They were laughing softly and I guessed she was making him guess what she was drawing. By the blush on his cheeks, I could guess it was something suggestive. I hated them.
            “You know, Maria,” I said right in the middle of the story she was telling about her ‘frenemy’ Josh who I kind of thought was always hitting on her, “It seems to be broken.” She stopped and narrowed her eyes. “What does?” she asked. She was beautiful. Suddenly she was as beautiful as she’d always been. Her edgy short hair cut framed her oval face like it was fashioned just for her. Her blue eyes, so dark they were nearly black, looked suspiciously and searchingly at me. “Forget it,” I said and looked down at my cold spaghetti. “Yeah right,” Maria said, “you said something was broken. What is it? Is it me? Is it us? You seem really distant tonight.”
            I looked over at the two kids playing the hand drawing game. The boy sat at the table alone, weeping. I looked back at Maria. “I’m sorry,” I said, “I just thought of this weird moment with my dad.” Maria leaned back in her chair and pinned her lips together primly. “I’m serious,” I protested, “I just realized that he broke my koala bear and my koala bear was there for me more often than he was. And that’s all he had to say to me, ‘It seems to be broken,’ like he had nothing to do with it. Just like he had nothing to do with me.”
            “I’m pregnant,” Maria said. The boy at the next table paid his tab and walked away.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Prayer for John



It is with gratitude I pray, Lord
Bless his body, bless his mind
And with humility I gaze at
This man you’ve named as mine
But keep his eyes upon you
Keep him walking close to you
And all the love he gives me
Let him give much more to you
Bless our love and future union
Upon us let your face shine
As with gratitude I thank you
For this man you’ve named as mine

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

Poetry eBook You Should Be Aware of...

     I don't read eBooks, and only sheer Nepotism would induce me to post this, but my brother created a book of poems called Rivers. You can find it now on Amazon for $1.50 (the current going price). You should check it out!

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

It is Brave to Live (Job 3:11)



It is brave to live in darkness
To continue to breathe through the bullets
When twenty childish souls are silenced
It is brave to think
Tomorrow and tomorrow I shall arise
God willing, in the darkness
I will continue to serve
And some will wonder like Job
Why did I not die at birth?
Why come to this sad broken earth?
But there is bravery in the heart
Beating in the sludge of evil
In the trust of a good God
Who holds back the tremors from the garden
And in each laugh and lovely thought
There’s a bullet for the devil
Hoping to drag us to the hopeless mourning cry
Why did I not die?
At birth, like Job who saw despair’s edge
And lived
And breathed
And never cursed God in the darkness

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

The Four Little Strangers and How They Grew Apart



And they were four
Islands somehow
Community
Accidentally family
And they ate silently
They were four
Strangers equally
Communing
Casually blood-tied
And the blood shed
Later brought to light
The imperfections
Ignored in anonymity
And when the bullet ripped through
The lives were open
Like blooms on distant islands
And Pangaea fell apart
In the days of Peleg.


Sorry so sad today, but I've been sitting on this one for over two years.