My sense of truest self
Comes in wandering
These winding paths now and then .
Some spots dim in places
Others , brightness floods .
There are words there ,
They sway in the breeze.
Some grow best in tender shadow,
While others stretch bursting for the sun.
These are my favourite walks
I wind my way through ,
Without Hurry clinging to my back
Without Ought and Should’s
Arms hanging off of my neck .
I wander my way .
There are times these words call out to me .
They asked me to take them
Tenderly to my heart
And pin them there
So that I may grow,
And so might they .
For we were meant for each other
And known from before .
Now and then I wander there,
The paths of the forest of words .
He stood beside me , to my right.
Closer than I am used to , for a man I do not know.
I don’t know his name , or how many years he had lived ,
But I suspect his face lied about his age
he was probably younger than I thought.
In his right hand was a blue plastic shopping bag filled with pita , his lunch for that day.
We shuffled forward a few steps,
but never really moved.
In his left hand he held a cigarette,
I looked at it
Knowing it was much more than a habit.
It was the trip to the sea he , his wife and children will never make.
It was the extra money he never has,
it was the thought of his children’s success and future
It was gathering with brothers and sisters so long apart
This cigarette was a relief .
Soothing relaxation for nerves always tried.
Physically , emotionally spiritually.
I looked at his lined brown face and whispered a prayer.
He lifted his cigarette to his lips and drew in his breath,
He tilted his head and with his eyes slightly closed he breathed out the white smoke that had filled his lungs.
It danced over his lips in a stream of curls , floating up and away
It was like he was breathing out a wish
And then it was gone .
I swallowed hard and turned my head and closed my eyes to contain my emotions.
We shuffled forward a few steps
but never really moved.
You know when I met you for the first time,
It was like I knew you.
Not in that cliche way ,
But in the way of a distant memory I had of you.
But how could that be?
We had never met…had we?
You wandered your way to me.
And I’m so glad you did
When I buried my face in your fur it smelled and felt like comfort
The kind of smell like a warm summer breeze on a lazy day.
And I knew you were in my heart from years past.
When I would run my hands , softly over your handsome face
And you would lift you half closed eyes up to mine as your ears went soft and lay down
I knew we were a pair.
Two of a kind
When I would hear the heavy drum of your great paws beating across the ground
Coming toward me , with that grin on you face.
My heart would swell so my chest could barely contain it.
You were a memory fulfilled
A gift, a breath of life to me
How can it be that now you are a memory ..
How can that be?
And now my chest feels empty , sore and strangled
My throat is dry and tight for missing you.
I still love you , you know.
In a way most people never understand
I still love you , you know
In a way most people never know.
My beautiful boy
I tuck you back into my heart,
That memory of our days.
I hold it there for safe keeping
I will pull it out again when I bury my face in your fur on the Rainbow bridge
Wait for me there.
I opened my window at 2:00 a m
I needed refreshment ,
The air was so crisp , it stood on end
Without a drop to offer .
Then then came the call of the night watchman
Asking who? who?
His call half warning, half lonesome song.
Impressive and full of authority like the voice of your father
The sentry called
So recognizable .
A voice you give attention to willingly
The brittle cold… silence again
I strain to hear the beauty of the sentinel inquiry again…
Then the loud abrasive mechanical bull
Scraping his metal chin across rock asphalt dropping its mess of sand and salt behind him.
Shamelessly blinking blue and red demanding attention
The rattle clatter of this one ..noisy.
I closed my window ,
And return to suffocation.
I have these dear friends …
They are great ,… tall …and handsomely green.
They have branches for arms that wave and call to me..
Looking for my attention
Trying to remind me of some ancient secret…
Something they have not forgotten …
Perhaps because they are so rooted..
Their leaves dance, …..twirling and twisting ..
They call out singularly and collectively ..
And I search the light that shimmers through the leaves, because of their jig..
I know there is something I have forgotten
It sits in the far corner of my mind
..slightly obscured , yet present…
I feel like I may re-collect this distant thought,
If I could cease hearing the manufactured…
Then perhaps , I could hold this distant thought in my hands…
If I could hear the real, true , changeless , ancient .
I turn my mind and eye and ear again to my tall and verdant friend…
What is it you say?
You who’s arms stretch and reach for the heavens, like grasping
What is the ancient thing I have forgotten under layers of life and busyness ?
And then the wind whispers…so loudly it is deafening..
Soul , spirit , ..hear this
From the earths foundations..the Father has loved you!
Before the time was measured by day or night..
The Son has longed for you!
When there was only The Three…your days were known..
This is the gift of the ancient things ..
Do you recall?
I heard you when you said , if I remained silent the rocks would cry out.
I knew you always spoke the truth…
But as you hung there ,I searched your face to find you..
I couldn’t see you..
your beautiful eyes..
They always told me you loved me
Even when you were correcting me
But as you hung there ,
I couldn’t see you..
I saw blood – so much- wet, and dried , and dirt and matted hair ,hanging skin..
And those beautiful eyes so brown and deep …now purple and swollen
Hidden from me.
And I remembered you said ,if I kept silent the rocks would cry out.
But as you hung there ..
My throat was strangled with sobs..
And my tongue a helpless weak lump..
I had no words…
The rocks… .?
Who knew were so soft?
They saw you too, along with all of your creation..
The rocks saw you
They saw you triumphing when I did not
They saw you faithful , trusting and believing
And they saw me
silent- empty of words
Unable to comprehend
What could they do but quake their praise…
My silence required it
If any moment was ripe with glory and adoration , it was this moment.
I remained silent..no accolade fell from my lips..my thoughts were of how I would live apart from you, how your beauty could be so marred..
I couldn’t see you, my belief was emptied
The rocks knew your faith
I heard you when you said “faith could move mountains…”
I wondered if I would ever have that measure of faith
I just never thought I would see it …
I don’t have faith to move mountains..
But your faith in Father does
That day you hung there
I could not see you even though you were there
Right in front of me…
And then the earth shook and the mountains moved by your faith and the rocks cried out….
I see you now…
I see you now.
I feel like a paperless book.
You might anticipate by the cover, just what could be inside .
You may even be confident you know what is inside.
But some times I feel like a paperless book
Contrary to the promises of the wrapping and spine
The inside of the volume lacks substance of any sort.
What is the meaning of being a book
With out leaf
What then is the plot
Without direction and story ..?
Come Great Scribe
Write on me again.
Let my heart be your pages.
Come Matchless Poet
Compose words of beauty and life
Where there seems so much grey void
So much nothingness and lethargy.
Then my heart will be Your volume.
Then the offer of this hopeful cover be sincere and genuine
Fill these pageless places with You, Your words and works of life.
Let this paperless story be Yours.
I want to be the moon , most days.
Although it can never compare with the sun
I would rather be the moon than then the dark blanket of night that covers every nook and crevice
The moon rises as a sentry taking its watch
the darkness creeps slowly , subtley over the earth
Dulling vision and detail,
muffling clarity making things seem blurry , people can feel lost and sometimes afraid .
I want to be the moon that shines
Offering guidance and light to feet and eyes
Even if it pales in comparison to the sun.
The moon never offers warmth , like the sun
After all the moon can only shine out of the suns gift of light in the first place.
The moons light is not its own
I like the moon ,
even on nights when it draws the clouds like a veil over its shy face
Then , There are also nights when it beams brilliant white.
So unapologetic for the intrusion of its glory…
Even still…it is not the sun…and I think it knows.
The moon is second
I want to be the the moon because it is humble
Plain – unremarkable compared to the sun
It cannot offer elements of life it’s self ,
Yet it doesn’t mind sharing the pale gift of light it has with an earth flooded in darkness.
I want to be the moon most days,
It knows that when the sun shines there is nothing to compare,
Not even the moon.
So It quietly retreats and offers the stage to the deserving life giving sun.
It waits in suspence until it again may offer pale light in darkness
Weak help by comparison..
But help all the same.
Turn me inside out I pray…
Would You ?….
Turn me inside out?….
Like the pocket of Your jacket or jeans
Let it all fall out…
Once thought meaningful…now nothing..
Let it be discarded,
Let it be removed,
Create room, for a Your hand to rest in my life.
Fill this lacking pocket with You…
Your hand in my emptied heart..
Turn me inside out I pray…
Would You ? …
Turn me inside out? …
Like the pocket of Your jacket or jeans..
I have a couple loaves-a few fish
Not much for the many
I’m in need.
I’m in a place of longing
I’m in a place of great weakness.
All is spent
My time is spent,
My life is spent,
My breath is spent
I have but a couple of loaves of prayer
I have but a few fish of hope.
These will not satisfy the many needs that clamour in my life.
There is no one else here with anything to offer me, ..except you.
You say…I have all I need and more if I will offer the few.
I’m tempted to cling to what remains.
It isn’t much.
Fear masters my hopeless mind.
What if I give all?
What if I Release my hand from the basket , passing it to you?
Then I will have nothing.
All will be lost.
But You do not beg or plead, force or coerce
You encourage me, “let your feet leave the ledge ”
The small place I presently stand .
Let the promise of more be my courage.
All is but very nearly gone…used up
What can I do? What choice do I make?
It shall be your possession now , no longer mine.
Take this nearly empty basket, that weighs so very much.
It contains only a handful of broken prayers and weaknesses left.
You receive my offering for only the time to bless it
Gifting it back to me.
How can the basket be so overflowing?
It contained nothing but dry used up effort when it left my hand.
How can it be so much easier to carry ?
It was unbearably heavy before…
Now it is light to carry, despite the fullness
You have taken my great burden of emptiness
You have filled and lifted
I have been gifted so much more that strangely weighs so much less.