Tag Archives: Life

Graded Earth

For the life of me
I can’t figure the parts
Stuck between where I’m going
And the spot I started
As anything other than
Some odd bird’s migration
North for the chill
Against the invitation
To follow the crowd, or
To just freeze
Admit some kind of defeat
But I ruffle the breezes
And walk on alone
I can’t understand
What I was supposed to do,
Was there some parcel of land
I neglected to climb?
Some trail or tour
I’m confused by the feeling
I’m a failure
When there was no clear mandate
Aside from learning
To love and be loved
To mitigate the pain and yearning
Of humanity, aware.

And I’m still here.


Low Tide

These ebbs erode the shoreline,
Carrying the banks to build bars
For the oyster to ingest
Constructing pearl from the hard sands
I once stood upon.

Time erodes my story,
Washing away the grains
Of days and hours and potential roads
And the details are the same
But the game of charades lilts to a side

Our birth pitches us into projects
We cannot honestly complete
Like writing the ill-conceived
Autobiography
About the stranger.

All the roots I sank
And I’m still just a duffle bag
One goodbye away
From a homeless nomad
Too tired to roam

Watching the churning sea
For the bits of debris
That feel like home.


Well Wandered

If I’d packed my bags then
During those first steps into the rain
How heavy-laden I might have been
To hold anything but love and pain
In these two, fragile hands

Only capable of carrying
What fits inside a coffin, or a womb,
A thing to bear, or to bury
One to produce- one to consume-
On either side of standing.

All those years, the quiet dignity
Growing in adverse conditions
Our roving anonymity
Void of live ammunition-
Defenseless but for invisibility

My identity I had only sworn
To deceased associations
I wandered, well-worn
With You as my nation;
My allegiance pledged in motility.

And my Nation wanders still
To the roadless places,
The empty hands, unfilled
But heavy with the graces
Carried to the last generation:

Shall I again pledge allegiance
To my well-wandered nation?


I Can’t

My whispers collect here.
Have I been in the cold
Wandering all these years?
Hope is the old man
Singing through his tears
To the child in my soul

I can’t, but I know
God can.

Caught between the crashing waves
My desires wash out to sea
Slipped between fingers that could not save
I drop to my knees in sand.
At least the child was brave;
What is left to make of me?

I can’t, but I believe
God can.


Complexity and Complicity

Forgive me my ancient remedy,
My overthinking, my overwringing
Each moment into a cacophony
Of strained, offkey singing

When I feel overwrought.

You gifted me to look inside,
And underneath, and from afar
A gift to see conclusions implied,
To guide my wandering star

By unknown charts and graphs.

Your gifts preserved me
I’m thinking on them oft again-
My years now stretch to eight and thirty:
You discipled me in lone places when

I wasted so much trying to join a club.

Disciple me again in this foreign land
I use this overthinking
To try to understand
When my engagement started sinking

Into the deep barrier of me:

To find the ladder back out-
I can feel another cistern
Of grief, and anger, and doubt
And I know I must return

To the spot, to break open the earth

I want to be angry,
Because I know if it’s not true
I enslaved myself to agree,
To believe them over You

And there’s nothing left but to repent-

Which I know I will do,
But I thought they held the keys-
They didn’t permit me pass through-
And now could it be

It only mattered who held the Truth?

It only mattered who the Truth held?


Leap of Faith

If wishing for something
could make it true,
what a horror in which we’d abide
Yet I yearn for You
and the Kingdom that can’t divide.

Most wretched am I,
among all men
if You aren’t who You are.
Here I pursue these disciplines,
but my hope is fixed afar.

My resolve and my delight
nailed to the sticking point
of Your blood-stained cross
The wood you worked anointed
by the profoundest, grievous loss

and my redemption.
Every iota of who I’ve been or will be
is leaning on who You are now
How sorrowful I’d be, how silly,
if You fell through somehow

but You haven’t yet.
When I travail, when I ache,
when the brokenness of man,
and the rebellion, shake me
You take my hand, You stand

How blessed am I
above all mankind,
that You lead me into the vast unknown
You whisper ideas beyond my mind,
ways above my own,

You elevate me,
and You expose my sin
Dirty veils that hide my face,
until You clean, You defend,
and wrap me again in Your grace

and Your love,
tangible as a hen’s wings
stretched over her offspring
Solid as concrete
under my foolish, and sometimes faithful feet.


Knock Knock

Here is what I know:
There was a judge, an infraction,
And a widow who would not let go
Or succumb to distraction.

Here is what I know:
Jacob took hold, wrestling,
And would not let go
”Until” he said, “You bless me.”

Here is what I know:
You’ve told us to pray,
And I refuse to let go
Until You have Your way

In this heart,
In this family,
In Your house,
In this city,
And beyond.