Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Then and Now and Not Yet

there was a time not long ago
my dreamer’s wish reached out
to every falling star or shimmering rainbow
petitioning for a sunny day with cotton ball clouds
and a red-checked picnic blanket spread
on a shore beside a bright blue glassy sea
and you there, leaning back with legs outstretched
reading aloud while I marveled at your brilliance
and a sailboat rocked gently at anchor
ready to carry us away together

there was a time not long ago
my daydreams always floated toward
a roaring fire on a cold, wet night
lighting a couch in a cozy nook
where we snuggled together sharing a quilt
quietly reading, hot cups of cocoa in our hands
content in the silence broken by crackling wood
wind whipping snow outside into mounds like cream
but we were side by side, safe and warm
hiding away from the world together

there was a time not long ago
when cold indifference broke through those dreams
like water extinguishing flames
leaving no room to hope anymore
the flattest words quenched and crushed and drowned
leaving a shell void of imagination
deflated, defeated, despairing – alone
beaches and firesides empty of sparkle
fog and grey settled in for a long stay
insisting acceptance there would be no together

in a time that is now and not yet
dreams stretch out again claiming new playgrounds
dreams peaceful and hopeful, empty of your face
dreams reaching for passion and wholeness
dreams embracing shorelines and mountaintops
dreams promising adoration returned
always inclulding one hidden in shadows
or with his back turned – one strong and brave
full of Love, this one meant to be in my dreams
the one who wants to build a life together

Monday, December 08, 2008


Kool Aid gave me this delightful award, which comes with an assignment: The recipient is to list 6 things that make him/her happy before subsequently passing forward the glee to others.

First, a poem for the first part.

Haiku List of Delights

1. Reading
new phrasing that makes known
life's very essence showing
simple depth -- old truths

2. Hugging
strong arms enfolding
tightly squeezing warmth surrounds
Love's closeness captured

3. Laughing
out of the belly
giggles and guffaws both come
spilling joyfulness

4. Family
because we are stuck
relating our growth becomes
better together

5. Conversation
ebbs and flows between
bridging experience and
knitting together

6. Jesus
descended to be
all that we are yet divine
His Love cost it all

And Part Two: My Awards List (in no particular order)

Erin - my sister, my friend, the most gifted person I know

Kara - friends like her are priceless treasures, and her blog bridges the frustrating miles between us

Amber - my dear friend who mothers some of my favorite small humans in the world and who also risks communicating the beauty and difficulty of her reality

LouCeeL - such genius and heart shared so openly

Flutter - a true phoenix giving courageous truth

Svensto - such delightful memories shared so eloquently

Friday, December 05, 2008

Almost the Dream

Tonight I said
A perfect night
Would be a glass of wine
And a football game
And a sweet newborn baby to hold
And I was almost right
That is almost the dream
What I forgot
Or didn’t mention
Is that a perfect night
Requires a strong chest to lean on
A strong arm around my shoulder
A second glass on the coffee table
Forgetting or suppressing
The incompleteness of that pictured perfection
Is frightening
Does it mean I’m losing hope
Does it mean I’ve given up
Does it mean I’m beginning to settle
For less
Than everything
Something inside me
Compels me to stand on the highest building
Loud and insistent
Demanding an audience
When is it my turn
When do I get my chance
When and where and why and how
Are You paying attention
Because I can do without the wine and the ball game
But living without the rest is wearing on me
I am ready for more
And I am holding out
Knowing there is more to come

Thursday, December 04, 2008

The Hope of Glory

When You made us
In your image
Your nature
Your essence
Not hidden away
But the core of who we were
You, deep inside us
You, moving within us
You, walking alongside us
You saw all that would be
Our brokenness
Our arrogance
Our anger
Our petty shortsighted selfishness
Murderous jealous rage displacing You
Turning our backs on You inside us
Shoving it deep down
Burying it away
Trapping ourselves
Into meaninglessness
Until You came for us
When Glory descended
Proclaimed by angels
Shocking in humility
The promise of redemption realized
Power held in check
Perfection sacrificed
Dust and clay
Flesh and bone
Mankind itself
Allowed to inhale
Divine justice and mercy
In one saving breath
So that You with us
God with us
Love with us
Could once more be
God in us
Love in us
Christ in us
The hope of Glory
As You intended
When You made us
In Your image

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

In the Quiet

in the quiet
sometimes it seems
like there's nothing
to say about
anything that matters

in the quiet
in the space
between my ears
silence clangs louder
than any muse

in the quiet
echoes remain resounding
ancient blunders disappointment
work to drown
insistent hopeful plans

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Broken from the moorings
Washed ashore in pieces
Cold and bleached and dried out
Ready for building
Not into previous forms
But into heat and light and beauty
Leaving the old behind
Letting go of what had been
Creation, reformation build anew
Flame and fire, smoke and ash, climb upward
Visible for miles, drawing curious eyes
Inspiring heat and light and beauty
Setting spirits ablaze

Saturday, November 08, 2008

Here's the Thing

Let me explain what I learned
Through the years of waiting
Through the hours of holding my tongue
Sitting across from you
Watching you across a room
Handing a glass back and forth across a table
I learned that I can survive in indefinite suspense
I learned that my heart can beat faster and break simultaneously
I learned that wanting something more than anything else
Doesn’t mean anything in the end

Let me explain what I learned
On the day I stopped waiting
When I finally loosed the question I held inside me
Sitting across from you
Watching you across a room
Handing a glass back and forth across a table
I learned that I knew you as well as I thought
I learned that my heart could break into infinitely smaller pieces
I learned that letting go of something I wanted so much
Would cost almost everything in the end

Let me explain what I am learning
Waiting for my heart to choose again
I no longer have to hold my tongue
Sitting across from someone else
Watching him across a room
Handing a glass back and forth across a table
I am learning that something still holds me back
I am learning that my heart is mended but it is not whole
I am learning that risking again is immeasurably more frightening
Knowing losing everything isn’t even the end

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Voting for Jakey

Today I thought about him
As I signed on the line
Took the paper to the cubbyhole
Colored in the boxes
Marking my choices
I thought about his big blue eyes
I thought about his quirky humor
I thought about his unique style
And I took a deep breath
Because none of the choices before me
Feel exactly right
And what I want for him
Is a world safe for growing up
A world full of imagination
A world where he won’t be asked to go to war
None of the choices I made
Will accomplish any of those things
But in signing my name
In coloring the boxes
I did all that I could
And I prayed a little prayer of thanks
That I was allowed to mark my choices
That he and I live in a land of freedom
Where everything is not only possible
But safer and easier than so many other places
And I hope he grows up to be thankful for that too
And to sign his own name on the line
Thinking about another kid with big blue eyes

These pictures are copyrighted by my lovely and talented sister Erin. Don't steal them.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Delusions of Grandeur

We struggle
Pushing hard
For results
Earnest work
Attempting to earn our way
We strive
We are diligent
We are urgent
We are determined
To become
Our success, they say
Is determined by our effort
Our failure, they judge
undermines our worth
And yet
Rain falls
On the just and the unjust
Storms destroy
Possessions of the wealthy and the poor
Ships sink at sea
Great ones and small ones alike
Our security
Our self-sufficiency
Our assured survival
Is but a (persistent, comforting) illusion
All of it - every moment
Of disaster
Of good fortune
Of peace
Of joy
Of sadness
Passes through Your Own Hand
We curse circumstances
You allow
We pretend we have some control
Our pride, masking our fear
Hiding our knowledge of our own inadequacy
Prevents us from looking
To the One Who set the Universe in motion
The One Who crafted every last detail
Who Knows All
Who Is All
Who invites our reverent reliance
Our relinquishment of our illusions
In the end, we recognize
You are working it all for our good
And the only real security
Or freedom
Or peace
Is trusting You

Monday, October 27, 2008

Whining in Rhyme

I feel like I've got nothing to say
And lots of words pent up inside of me
I feel like I've got nothing to give
What talent I have flails aimlessly
I feel like I'm all emptied out
And yet, I feel something growing inside
I feel like I'm ready to give up
Still somehow I keep fighting, staying alive
I keep rushing forward then sliding again
I wish I could cut myself a little more slack
I feel ready for something to start anew
To release the old hangups that hold me back

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

In the Seattle Public Library

Light streams in
Through steel and glass
Illuminating humanity
Interspersed among
Voluminous wisdom
Silence broken by
Clicking technology
Soft laughter
Whispered conversation
Scattered about
Surrounded by
Works already refined

Thursday, October 16, 2008

John Hughes, You Know Us Well

A contest from Backpacking Dad
Caused poetry really quite bad
So much to consider
(and update on Twitter)
But maybe I've something to add

Remember the scene with the bike?
Long Duc Dong and the girl that he liked?
They are bouncing around
'Fore he lands on the ground
A study in cross culture psych

The girl on the bike is Marlene
She's famous for only that scene
And having big breasts
Not being suppressed
For fully clothed sex (fairly clean)

Marlene's an improbable lover
But that Dong, he desired no other
I hope I'm like her
It will cause quite a stir
If a Chinaman makes me a mother

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

October Morning

Sky like a pencil sketch
Empty of color
Puddles reflect lines of gray
Descending from clouds
Smothering sunlight
Rain keeping time against the window
Muting colors
A mockery of Monet in
Army green and sandstone

Friday, October 10, 2008

Louisville Haiku

Old houses creaking
Wind whispers under doorways
Wood yielding underfoot

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

Before Waking

A knock on the door
Opens to a familiar face
Unsure, searching
For welcome
For forgiveness
From the hesitation
Behind the half-closed door
After an eternal moment
Two foreheads rest on
Opposite sides of a door post
Leaning in toward each other
Moving to touch
One step closer
Simultaneous deep breaths
Exhaling apprehension
Slowly inhaling possibility
Stepping around the door
A sandpaper cheek slides
Slowly against a smooth one
Dropping to a shoulder
Breathing in memory
Then pulls back
Eyes meet again
Unsure, still questioning
Answering, one pair of
Hands finds hips, the other shoulders
Lips succumb to gravitational pull
And one foot reaches to close the door

Monday, October 06, 2008

Why, When, Will, If, How, Then, Who

Why do I struggle
Why do I flail on my own
Why don’t I reach up
When I look back
When I curl in
When I stand stymied, straining
Will I ever be
Will I ever know
Will I ever have, forgetting
If only I look up
If only I breathe deep
If only I ask and knock and seek, suddenly
How You provide
How You delight
How You pour Love down and
Then my wheels spin again
Then I grow and learn and move on
Then peace floods into
Who I am because of You
Who I will be because of You, and I know again
Who You are

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Regret in Flames

angry words pour out
waves of fire
gaining speed
lava boiling over from
the abyss of fear
anger scorches earth
turning trust to ashes like
an ancient tree
destroyed by lightning
anger resounds like thunder
obliterating reason's quiet calm
it leaves a solitary figure
crouching in a barren wasteland
suffering and charred
wounded and alone

Friday, October 03, 2008

Four for October

Fall means dark early
Sun rising later, urging
Sleepy slow mornings

Fall means cool breezes
Stirring colored leaves to drop
Crunching under boots

Fall means hot chocolate
Lit pumpkins smiling over
Family dinner

Fall means brisk evenings
Contently swinging on
Porch swings in sweaters

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

On Meghan

she has always made me laugh
it’s reassuring—no matter what
even when I am boiling over
even when I am angry at her

when I am sad or lonely or hurt
she deftly spins words and expressions
into infectious comedy
irresistibly overcoming my best defenses

she is fiercely loyal
do not cross her—this is no joke
she takes me under her wing
and she alone may henpeck

woe to the attacking outsider she detects
she is more likely to forgive
a deep wound to her own heart
than a slight to mine

she wants the best for everyone
even the ones on her enemies list
she sees problems as an invitation
to delve deep and offer the very best solution

she has a wonderful plan for your life
and no fear of sharing it
her relentless helpfulness floats
along the current of her compassion

she keeps me grounded and uplifted
she cuts through even the best disguise
yet her cynicism is often her own illusion
ineffectively guarding her tender heart

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


on Wall Street and Main Street
markets move
prices rise and fall
confidence peaks and wanes
experts scramble to explain
what the numbers mean
what the future holds
what will become of us
so I breathe in deep
and remind myself
that You own the cattle on a thousand hills
that You spoke the universe into existence
that You are not bound by time or space or finances
no matter what
governments or
economies or
world powers do
nothing escapes Your notice
nothing crashes without Your permission
You allow the rain to fall
on the just and the unjust
You are in control

Sunday, September 28, 2008

After Dinner at Erin's

once we were enemy warriors
battling our similarities
spurred on by our differences
never attempting détente

we clashed vigorously over
nothing more than our mutual dislike
wielding our finely honed weapons
suffering alone beside each other

self-satisfied and insufferable
we found the familiarity of our
conflict somehow easier than
the risk of working for peace

miraculously now we calmly sit across
a table set for two, sharing a warm meal
conversing easily over trivialities and profundities
planning eagerly for more time together

in the space between us now
there is more than détente
there is comraderie, there is friendship
there is hard-won peace

we are still different; we are still similar
now we choose to revel in the joy
of life lived alongside each other
learning to love each other well

Thursday, September 25, 2008

For Lucy Maud Montgomery

The goblins of her fancy lurked in every shadow about her, reaching out their cold, fleshless hands to grasp the terrified small girl who had called them into being.
L.M. Montgomery, Anne of Green Gables

Because I love Anne
I read Emily and Kilmeny and Valancy
And Avonlea outshone even Camelot
On the stage of my imagination

Because I love Anne
I looked at the world with eyes that saw
Grandeur all around – Lakes of Shining Water
And White Ways of Delight

Because I love Anne
I treasured my own kindred spirits
Sifted through the Pyes of the world
Until I found my own Diana

Because I love Anne
I watch for real love in my everyday life
And guard against idealizing dark melancholy
Holding out for Gilbert to reveal himself at last

Because I love Anne
I grieve for scope of imagination overcome
By depression and isolation
Desperation overshadowing such resilient insight

Because I love Anne
My heart breaks at knowing
Her brilliant creator sank beneath the depths of despair
Locking away untold stories forever

Because I love Anne
I will share the stories of L.M. Montgomery
With other little girls and hope
They learn her optimism and honor her maker

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

He Loved Penguins

He never slept well
But he loved penguins
He lay awake at night
And thought about flightless birds on iceburgs
A row of stuffed tuxedos
Guarded his bed when he finally drifted off
Warm and safe, dreaming little boy dreams
Now he still lays awake
But he doesn’t imagine penguins anymore
He listens to angry noise
Blasting like dynamite into his psyche
Loud words insisting that life is
Darkness and hatred and violence
When he can’t sleep
He wanders, solitary and restless
Drifting off in the wee hours to wake again
Isolated and lonely, frustrated and annoyed
He seems so far away
From the little boy who knew everything
About Emperors and Kings and Fairies
Now intent on knowing everything
About smokes and beers and girls
The boy who loved penguins
Is somewhere in there
I want him to know that there is an easier way
That love is real
That everything passes in time
That he won’t feel this way forever
I want to hang onto him tightly
Pull him in close
Love him for the little boy he was
The curious one who loved penguins
Hope for the man he will become
The one who will again be open and curious
Who will know that life can be creation
Harmony and connection and joy
The one who will find peaceful sleep at last
And wake to teach his own little boys and mine
About penguins

Monday, September 22, 2008


Waking without an alarm
Hovering between sleep and consciousness
I could be any of my selves
Under covers warm and weighty
Rolling to find a cool spot on a pillow
Eventually, one deep breath and a stretch
Ushers in awareness
And my eyes open to a bed I bought
In a house I own, with my dogs on the floor beside me
My laundry on the floor and dishes in the sink
Some days I sigh and wish I could rewind
Time like an old tape in a VCR
To find again late, wine-filled nights
Laughter around a rickety table
A world full of familiar friendly faces
Where I never went to the grocery store alone
Where laundry day meant a long conversation
And Wednesdays meant cheep pizza and beer
Or farther back, bike rides
Marked with the rhythm of practicing spelling
Swinging as high as I could go –
Until the chains relaxed and then pulled taut again
Swimming faster than the other kids
Or miles underwater, muffled sounds overhead
Days when all the time in the world was immeasurably spent
Omnipresent miniature relatives clamoring For apple juice and a diaper change
And time never stretched out long and lonely
Where all minutiae was rich with meaning
Where my best stories were born
And I never woke to find choices like walls hemming me in
In that space between sleeping and waking
With my cheek on the cool pillowcase
Suspended in time

Friday, September 19, 2008

Haikus for Lucy

she isn’t here yet
she is waiting, biding time
not ready to meet

she is squished in tight
trying to stretch she pushes
against mother ribs

voices echo in
dark warm spaces--already
she knows and loves some

big hands and small ones
blankets ready to receive
newborn perfection

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Truth in Fiction

there are scenes in some stories I play
over and over again
every one has the same theme
she has lost hope
she has struggled to move on
she is finding her independent footing
and she looks up
and there he is standing in front of her
eyes full of adoration and promise
in a book
in a play
in a movie
even on tv
that moment
rocks me back on my heels
stomach clenching like
I'm the one in love
somehow not trite – at least to me
these quintessential,
so clichéd, moments I crave
when he touches her cheek
and she leans into his hand
you can see her entire body
at once relax in relief
and tense with anticipation
her arms up over his shoulders
her hands find the back of his head
she pulls him toward her
and there is the money shot
the perfect kiss
how can I watch this scene
over and over and over again
in so many different stories
some days, it breaks my heart
but more often, it gives me hope
it seems crazy
does it set me up to wait forever
or are these stories telling truths
like only fiction can
echoes of histories
shadows of sincerity
attempts to capture
what it means to fall in love
and have someone love you back
paling in comparison to the reality
it’s not always the first kiss
it’s the first kiss with forever beyond it

Back to Work Haiku

after vacation
work seems not so bad but not
so good as time off

Sunday, September 14, 2008

On Jen's 30th

someday we will be the ancient ones
sitting in chairs like these
our white hair stark against brilliant hues
smiling as our children's children play

on that day, we will have lived long lives
layered, intertwined like vines
growing along white picket fences
we'll have weathered many storms and bloomed

arm in arm, we will lean as we walk
toward the sea, pondering
this treasured gift--knowing we remain
survivors measuring lives well spent

through the lines on each others' faces
we'll catch a stolen glimpse
echoed smiles and laughter--our past selves
lingering with us, keeping their watch

those ghosts trailing behind us will know
their fondest wish endured
we who chose each other then held fast
constant and steady--promises kept
(photo © fly photography 2008, courtesy of my talented sister Erin www.flyphoto.typepad.com)

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Oceans Apart

There’s an ebb and flow between us
Sometimes I wish would find equilibrium
In the unbalance
I'm never sure exactly
What you’re thinking
How you’re feeling
What direction you’re moving
And whether I’m invited
Compounded when you’re far away
Sadness or confusion or contemplation
Over the miles on the phone
I want to look into your eyes
To see the tilt of your head
Which of your smiles you’re wearing
How your hands are moving
When you’re in my zip code
I just want to be where you are
Regardless of what else is going on
And that’s not complex at all
But time and space meddle
With my sense of who you are
And who I am separate from you
Some days, I just want to sever the connection
To find solid ground again
To avoid the waves and the tide
But I never do
Because that feeling comes and goes
Like everything else between us

Monday, September 08, 2008

One for Debo

Did you see her walk down the street?
Striding on long legs in heels
Red toes peeking out under dark jeans
Black tank top skimming feminine shoulders
She held her head up, her blue eyes clear
Her hair bounced slightly in rhythm with her steps
Did you notice her? Most people did.
She has that way about her.
But her real draw is barely visible in her gait
Confidence and compassion
Humor and humility
Her tender heart
Her knowing smile
Kneeling to look a kid in the eye
Her arm around a friend’s shoulder
Concentrating - brow furrowed
Dancing with grace but not quite abandon
Singing occasionally slightly off key
She is coming into her own
Girl becoming woman
Casting off childishness
Holding tightly to the good things
Letting the bad ones go
Watch her walk – do you see it now?
As she goes, I picture pigtails with ringlets
Like a ghost trailing behind her
Or a premonition holding her hand
Who she was and who she will be
Echoed in who she is today
Keep an eye on her.
She's worth watching.
She'll amaze you.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Friday Haiku Trilogy

Work is hardly worth
All this time and effort to
Bring home just bacon

Weekends bring slumber
Slower mornings then lazy
Afternoons dozing

I wish for cool days
Stretching into breezy nights
Autumnal dancing

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Ready for Rain

Parts of me have been dry so long
Deprived of any moisture
Hardened into unyielding stone
I don’t remember how softness feels

When I survey the varied terrain
I skip over the baked ground like white space
Focus instead on the luscious green fields
Bursting with life soaked in steady rain

Storm clouds gather on the horizon
Ready to pour down life-giving sustenance
The green fields are ready, soft and waiting to receive
Tiny roots and leaves barely shading the top soil

But the bone dry crust is doomed
When the rain comes, water runs off in rivers
Nothing penetrates the scabbed, scarred ground
An impenetrable shell shields everything below

Unless the rain falls so very gently
Collecting leisurely, it pools on the surface
Some evaporates into oblivion, but a few drops manage
To slowly soak down, ever-so-slightly softening

That’s when I notice – I feel the dryness
Opposing the smallest claim moisture has staked
The hard ground, desperate for rain, cries out
To be broken up and turned over, exposed to all the elements

Rain finds the plowed up earth, soaks into every crak
Saturates even the smallest spaces between the dirt
Finding at last the seeds hidden beneath the surface
Ready to germinate as the slick mud becomes soft earth

And if the seeds grow fast enough, they lock the moisture in
Protect the ground from the sun’s dehydrating gaze
Secure the surface from the exposure that forces crusting over
Ensures that the soil remains ready for rain

Five O'Clock Haiku

I want to go home
No more work today please thanks
But conversation


On the best kind of day
Air blows gently against skin
Like a lover’s breath against an ear
Cooler than expected
Promising delight

Sunlight brightens all it touches
Grass and trees, earth and sky
Like a knowing smile skips heartbeat stones
Patiently anticipating
Impending joys

Featherlight clouds slide slowly
Across a clear sapphire sky
Like bedroom eyes along curves
Slowly tantalizing
Heightening senses

Rain slips gently along face and hands
Between parted lips, along a palm
Like a tingling first kiss awakens desire
Each touch rousing
Thirst for more

Wednesday, September 03, 2008


Words incubate life’s experience
Creation requires
Time on the ground
Choices made
Hopes deferred
Dreams realized

Words indoctrinate hard earned wisdom
Contemplation of
Hypothesis tested
Paths traveled
Bridges crossed
Treasures found

Words generate new growth in spirit
Motivation from
Visions revisited
Stories deeply rooted
Discoveries charted
Lessons relearned

Words encapsulate Love’s desires
Expectation cedes
Possibilities cherished
Passion remembered
Joys rekindled
Hope reborn

Words formulate a kindred spirit
Conversation brings
Souls intersected
Sorrows divided
Kindness inspired
Heartsongs shared

Monday, September 01, 2008

Are you ready?

When it begins in late summer
It seems too hot
For two-a-days
For pads and helmets
For running far
For hitting hard
For jumping high
Yet they turn out
Grueling long days
Condition character
Turn talent into greatness
As the weather cools
Their true power is revealed
Youthful vigor yields to
Potent and refined masterful technique
Impossibly quick cuts
Perfectly executed routes
Breathtaking long, spiraling passes
Backs breaking through superhuman barriers
Walls of living steel
Lightning fast resistance
Clashing, colliding, crashing
Strategies weighed in rhythmic intervals
We watch with rapt attention
When rain turns to snow
Green grass gives way to mud and sleet
Stories are born
Legends are made
Victors emerge
Triumphs and defeats are tallied
Success fuels inspiration
Until at last, the champions are crowned
Half the year we watch
Half the year we wait
Can you feel it in the air?
This year’s time has come
It is September
And again they take the field

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Awaiting Transition

So much pain
And confusion
And doubt
And sadness
Circling around all the time
In Silence
Or in anger
Or in deep, dark depression
Not sleeping
Not getting out of bed
No relief from tears
Hurt so deep
It feels bottomless
We look up
We cry out
We seek help
We press in
And as we turn
Toward the light
Morning comes
Darkness fades
Calm and stillness
Begin to seep through
Love begins
To heal
To mend
Our broken hearts
Our wounded souls
Our aching spirits
We grow toward wholeness
We stretch and move
We get up
Stepping lightly
Holding our heads aloft
And we begin to dance again

Tuesday, August 26, 2008

Not Quite Children...But

They are wrestling
My little black mops
Chewing on each others’ faces
Tugging on each others’ ears
Hiding behind corners
Waiting to pounce
Tails all aquiver
Running in circles
Full of joy
Happy to be together
Endlessly entertaining


When you say
-What is your God like
-Who is your Higher Power
-What do you mean when you say
“God as I understand God”

I say

No matter what
I do
I say
I think
I feel
I believe
I fail
Love remains the answer
Keep asking the questions

Sunday, August 24, 2008

For Amber

It’s just a lot—all of it
The sadness and the tension
The loneliness and the loss
The enormity of forever changing
But most of all
The little people counting on you
To get it right
To keep holding your head up
To keep walking forward
To be strong
To endure
To love them enough
To love yourself enough
To cling to the truth you know
And keep after the truth you don’t know yet
To lean into the light
To refuse to sink down into darkness
To teach them how to hold His hand
By holding on yourself
To let them know where your strength comes from
It’s so much…
It’s really so much
But more important in the end
Than unpacked boxes
Or organized clothes
Or even civility among adults
Is learning that dependence
Clinging to that reality
Making sure they understand
That He loves them
More than you love them
Because He does
And so it’s a lot
But it isn’t too much
They are watching
As you walk through this valley
And they will learn to love Him
Like you love Him
And to love each other
And to be the men and women
They were meant to be
Before time began
Just like you
Deep inside them, they will understand
Jesus loves you - this I know

Friday, August 22, 2008

August in Texas

Miraculously green
Almost lush
Underneath the bluest sky
Cool breezes
Out of place
Compliments of days on end
Of persistent gentle rain
Soaking into the parched soil
Moving up into fading brown grass
Coaxing trees to expand
That’s how we want
Your Spirit to fall
Not in a torrent
But in stretches of time
Soaking into our parched souls
Softening our hardened hearts
Gentling our harshest emotions
Over and over again
Awakening everything dead and dry
Coaxing us to look up
Toward the light
Seeking our sustenance
Becoming all You created us to be

Thursday, August 21, 2008


It's so cloudy and murky
When I look for You
I only see myself
I only hear my own thoughts
I feel alone and afraid in the dark
I don’t understand
I can’t see what You’re doing
I don’t understand what’s going on
I keep asking and asking
I keep pushing and pressing in
I keep doing everything I know to do
And it seems like nothing’s changing
At least not for the better
It seems like it’s spiraling downward
Falling into nothing
The yawning abyss
And it doesn’t make sense to me
It doesn’t feel like You meant what You said
It seems like You’ve forgotten
Or moved on
And I feel all alone
On the precipice
Hanging on with all my strength
And yet I know
You are here
Even when I can’t feel Your presence
You haven’t let go
Even when my hands are slipping
You remember
Even when I forget
You keep your promises
Even when I doubt them
You understand it all
Even when I can’t reason it through
You hold me up
Even when my knees buckle under the strain
You keep me from falling
Even when my strength fails utterly
You make all things new
Even when I see only devastation
You hold me in Your hands
Even though I try to do things on my own
You don’t change
You don’t leave
You haven’t given up
You are working
You have a plan
Your timing is perfect
You are absolutely sovereign
Absolutely loving
Absolutely kind
Everything I am not
Your ways are so much higher than mine
Nothing I think or feel or do or say can change You
You always were
What you always are
What you will be forever
It’s me that’s changing
Because You love me
Ever so slowly, I am
Learning to trust in Your forever Love
Instead of my own perceptions
Learning to depend on what You say
Instead of how I feel
Learning to seek Your direction
Instead of running away to try it on my own again
And as you change me, I wait for the day
When the fog lifts
When the darkness is gone forever
When the mirror disappears
When You are revealed in all Your glory
And I see You face to face

Wednesday, August 20, 2008


In the quiet
Hope unfolds
Flutters its wings
Stretches wide
Looks around
Fear too and Doubt
Stir from slumber
Jostle about
Coveting space
Noticing, Hope
Hums softly
Lingers over memories
Smiles knowingly
Glances at pictures
Looks out the window
Places her hand
On Gratitude’s shoulder
Gratitude unwinds
Long arms
Wrapped around comfort
An old blanket
Deeply inhaling
She stretches out
Expanding her reach
Hope and Gratitude
Hold hands
Sway and dip
Circling, Pulsing
An ancient rhythm
Light footsteps
Quietly drumming
Slowly, then
Doubt’s head begins to nod
Fear’s eyes close again
They yield to sleep
So in the silence
Only Hope and Gratitude remain
Joined together
Twirling with delight

Friday, August 15, 2008

Love wins

Rejection prowls
Casts doubt
On worth
On value
Attempts slaughter
Of character
Of wisdom
Of sweetness
Of gifts
Even beauty
It projects
Wrenching pain
Continuing horror
Vile rejection
Wicked dishonesty
Yet you
Remain beautiful,
Shining Star
Sweet mercy
Kind goodness
Brilliant light
Powerful strength
Gentle compassion
Graceful peace
Relentlessly pressing
You create
You affirm
You delight
You believe
Simply complete
Utter perfection
Your worth
Sheltered inside
His Love
His Approval
His Affection
His Delight
Shielded within
His Wonder
His Glory
His Truth
Rejection howls
Impotent rage
Helpless flailing
Incapable frustration
Caught outside
Away from
Trapped beyond
Love’s fortress
Love’s stronghold
Love’s citadel
Your refuge
Your protection
Your redemption
Love safeguards
And you,
Precious one
Dwell within
Abide inside
Walk confidently
Into life
After all

Thursday, August 14, 2008

I'd Rather

I would rather be rocking
Tiny new life gently to sleep
Bundled up
Newly bathed
Content and warm
Sweet and soft
Than sitting here
Typing and reviewing
Boring documents

I would rather be chasing
Little legs attempting escape
Moving fast
Giggling hysterically
Round and soft
A little unbalanced
Than sitting here
In front of a computer
All day long

I would rather be talking
Over friendships and heartbreaks
Her hair swinging
Words tumbling out
Legs tucked up
Under her chin
Than sitting here
On the phone all day
With demanding clients

I would rather be sitting
Head on his shoulder
Arms tightly holding
Warm and loving
Belonging and safe
Two-as-one life
Than sitting here
Alone with a book
And a glass of wine

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Expectant Waiting

Everywhere around
Expectant waiting
Torturously bowing bodies down
Birthing pains
Twisting insides
Pain doesn't empty
But fills up
Too tired
To keep going
He comes behind
Our birthing partner
We lack words
To comfort each other
But He knows what to do
Breathing alongside us
Rhythm forming
Moments of calm
Peace in the midst of pain
Promise in the midst of misery
Strength in the midst of desperation
Warmth soaks in
Weaving the pain
Into wordless prayer
Whispering Love
Humming Promises
Chanting Assurance
Until Truth beats within us
Holding us firmly in His grasp
His Presence in our desperation
So our expectant waiting
No longer shrinks
But enlarges us
Fills up
We grow as we wait expectantly
We reach capacity
And then the overflow
Long awaited joy
No longer hidden
That Presence
Shapes our reality

Monday, August 11, 2008


When it got to be too much
He got into a boat
And sailed away
And the crowds followed Him with their eyes
Hundreds of them
Hungry for more
They would have wrung Him out entirely
They hung on his every word
Drained Him dry
Absorbed anything?
Hard to say how much
They were waiting for Him to act
To make their lives better
He pulled away
To sleep
To relax
To be renewed
With a few friends in a boat
A meal and conversation
He explained
I do only what I see
My Father doing
Even with the ability to work miracles
He didn’t heal all of them
He didn't speak to everyone
He didn’t touch each one who pressed in close
He walked through towns and the countryside
He chose some
But not others
Were these boundaries?
Practicalities born of humanity?
An example for those of us coming later?
What was that withdrawal?
Because in the end...
In the end there were no boundaries
In the end, every person He hadn’t healed
Every person who waited for His words
Every person He hadn’t touched
Received His ultimate sacrifice
Maybe, partially, uncomfortably
What it means
Is that you can’t just connect the dots
Follow the rules
You can't simultaneously withdraw
And give everything you have
Maybe it only makes sense
When you do the part in the middle
Watch for what the Father is doing
Reach out in tandem with Him
Join in His program already in progress
Otherwise, you’ll never know
When to walk away from the crowd
And when to lay your life down
For your friends

Friday, August 08, 2008


If God is Love (and He is)
And we were made in His image (we were)
Then we were made in the image of Love (yes we were)

If God is Love (and He is)
And sin separated us from Him (and it did)
Then sin estranged us from Love (yes, it did)

If God is Love (and He is)
And He desired to restore us to Himself (and He did)
Then He desired to restore us to Love (yes, yes)

If God is Love (and He is)
And His death on the cross redeems us (and it does)
Then His death on the cross opens the way for Love to reach us (yes it does)

If God is Love (and He is)
And accepting His gift restores us to Him (and it does)
Then accepting His gift returns us to Love (it does, it does)

If God is Love (and He is)
And He is filling us up with His Spirit (and He is)
Then we will overflow with His Love (yes, yes)

If God is Love (and He is)
And we are becoming more like Him (we are)
Then we will become who we were always meant to be (and that is?)

The embodiment of His Love (oh, yes)

So if God is Love (and He is)
And we were made in His image (and we were)
Then we were made in the image of Love (amen)

Thursday, August 07, 2008

Tough Love

She said to herself
Life isn’t going to get any easier
You can’t change anyone except yourself
You don’t get to opt out of reality by wishing
It is always going to be hard, but know this:
You are going to have to do it yourself
No one is coming to save the day
So stop sitting on the sidelines
Spin your wishes in motion
Start stepping along
Evolve into

Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Now I Remember

You said
You would stay
No matter what
You would not leave
I am not alone
You said
Perfect Love
Casts out Fear
Of Rejection
And your presence
Is Perfect Love
You said you would stay
No matter what


Do I stay open
Without shattering?

Do I stay vulnerable
Without being crushed?

Do I stay willing
Without being walked on?

Do I stay hopeful
In the face of long delay?

Do I hold on
When everyone else has let go?

Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Right Now

I think I need
Solitude and the ocean
Silence except
Waves crashing
Gulls crying
Maybe rain falling
Out at sea
Clouds moving by
And far off sailboats
No one else visible
Space for thoughts
Space for quiet
Space to awaken in
On the cliffs
Water sprayed on my cheeks
Always the same
Constantly changing
Life in context

Monday, August 04, 2008

John Mayer plays superpages.com

He was
Endless melodies
New ones
Old ones
He was

They were
More concerned with
Their presence
Than being present
They were

We were
Feeling a little old
A little tired
A little distracted
And annoyed
Drawn in
Dancing a little
Away from it all
Eyes closed
Enjoying the breeze
We were

Friday, August 01, 2008

Love Love Love

He is Love
In His essence
In His character
Everything He does
Everything He is
Comes from Love
And Mercy
And Joy
And Power
And Comfort
And Light
And Glory
All from Love
His very nature
All of Him
Every bit
Saturated in
Marinated in
Overflowing with
Love Love Love
Love breaks through
Love moves past
Love conquers all
Love never fails
Love is who He is
When He says I Am

Thursday, July 31, 2008


Relax! Everything is going to be all right.
Rest! Everything is coming together.
Open your hearts - LOVE IS ON THE WAY.

Fight with everything you have
Cling desperately to the gift of faith you've been given
Don't let go of it - no matter what it costs you
And when your faith feels small
Come to me and ask for more

There are those around you who hold faith loosely
They don't value it like you do
They bring their own corrupt wisdom
But you bring my Truth - LOVE IS ON THE WAY

There is a great mess out there
It is bigger than you are
So you cling to me
You keep me before you
Here is the truth - LOVE IS ON THE WAY

You--all of you--you build your faith
You pray in the Spirit
You place yourself right in the center of My Love.
Open your arms--keep them open and outstretched
Don't close yourself off
Don't shut yourself down

Wait--stay ready for my mercy and love
I will take care of you.
I love perfectly when you cannot
I am the more that you yourself cannot be
This is unending life.
This is reality--

Go easy on those who hesitate in the faith
Go after those who take the wrong way
Be tender with sinners - not soft on sin
Lift me up. Lift me up. LIFT ME UP.
I will draw all men unto myself.
And I will keep you on your feet
You will stand tall in my presence
You will celebrate my glory and majesty, strength and rule
My kingdom has come and is coming:


What is it about sex
That makes rational people
Behave irrationally
Take leave of their senses
Either by having it
Or not having it
Or judging others for having it
Or not having it
What is it about sex
That makes our opinions so...
Harsh and
Loud and
What is it about sex
That absorbs everything else into itself
Erases realities
Some permanently
Some temporarily
What is it about sex
That changes the way we feel about ourselves
That changes the way we feel about each other
That makes everything better or
Makes everything worse
Very predictably
What is it about sex
That is so defining
But undefinable
What is it?
Sometimes Want
Sometimes Need
Sometimes Passion
Sometimes Desperation
Sometimes Tenderness
Sometimes Wantonness
Sometimes Connection
Sometimes Thrill
Sometimes Quiet
Sometimes Perfection
Sometimes Devastation
What is it about sex?

Not Imaginary Anymore

She was imaginary until he posted a picture of her
Except that I always knew she existed
Before she existed for him
Then, the reality of her was more meaningful to me
Than it was to him
Now, she has his heart
And he is her world
He is not mine anymore
Not even a little bit
He never was, really
But, he seemed to be
There was an abiding fiction that he might be
Once, he seemed like the sun and the moon together
Now, there are lots of days that I don't even think about him anymore
Today is not one of those days
There will never be a day that she doesn't think about him
I knew him then
But she will know his forever
And my heart is healing
But it isn't yet healed
It wasn't really ready for the fact that she exists
That she isn't imaginary