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They said that I could not come and see you

They said I could imagine you were here with me

They said I should  dress as if you were coming to see me

They said  I should put chair and cross and water out for you

So I did , I dressed , I lit a candle , and in a bowl I poured water

And Suddenly, before  I could kneel, before I could think on you , before  I invited you to  come

you came. … as a voice of light on all that I thought about you

You came with a legion of light in places hiding from you

you said that you came to see me

you said that you are more than I can imagine

you said I can sit with you

You said to see your love on the cross

You said to drink of your water

you said “you are lovely”

you wrapped and warmed and wooed me in your arms of light.

4Th Sunday in Lent

“Then Jesus spoke to them again, saying, “I am the light of the world. He who follows Me shall not walk in darkness, but have the light of life.””

‭‭John‬ ‭8:12‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

 

Ashes , Ashes, we all fall down

“Blow the trumpet in Zion, Consecrate a fast, Call a sacred assembly;
Let the priests, who minister to the LORD, Weep between the porch and the altar; Let them say, “Spare Your people, O LORD, And do not give Your heritage to reproach, That the nations should rule over them. Why should they say among the peoples, ‘Where is their God?’ ””
‭‭Joel‬ ‭2:15, 17‬ ‭
Dedicated to George Unglaub
Lent 2020

What shall we do in this vineyard of palms ?

where Prudentius’s vices are verdant fronds?

where we pretend to be “Blessed “trunks from the very first psalm

While our roots sit shallow in a climate so calm

What shall be our song ?

While vile villains and viruses threaten the crop ?

shall we sing “round the Rosie “before media’s shop ?

Till preachers hold out hands to command winds to stop.

Or politicians plead for another country’s crop.

Shall we hear from afar an ancient man’s song?

Telling a dirge for all we’ve done wrong?

He rebukes our tongues with Holy tong!

“young Fools who stand at palm tree with locked knee !

You Sloths at ease as you do as you please

Weaklings who can’t cut virtuous frond

you have no good thing for the King of the palm!

shame to you ,shame to you

There is no fruit to bear through you !

You fools ,Young fools !” the ancient man cries

“ you have no hallelujah !”

he Weeps and sighs

So what , Shall we say as we look at the field?

Can we bend our stiff knees where our heart’s once kneeled?

can Wednesday Ash intention bring better yield?

Can Repentance burning 40 make A sick land healed?

The child rises to Ask the ancient Man “can we believe ? “

The child takes his hands makes a ring for them to receive

Singing …

From ashes Upon ashes another Easter crop has a chance!

See old man a new palm tree made roots for our dance !

Oh sing with me old man To the king of the palm ..

and The king of the ground where we once belonged.

Oh sing ashes and hallelujah as we fall down. !

Sing once again old man and receive your crown.

My Valentine

In memory of meeting my first love, Jesus, on February 14 , 1986
Grace Church ,Tallahassee ,Florida

I met you on a pew

one Valentine’s Day .

From saying I never knew you .

Never trusted or cared to .

I came to the back pew

one Valentines Day .

Preachers teachers and offering keepers

Tried to tell me about you.

Tried to tell me to like you.

But they did not know you .

You were on the back pew

Waiting for me on Valentine’s Day

I saw you In the splinters of that pew

on Valentine’s Day

I saw and I knew that you were beautiful

and I saw and knew that you were marred

I saw and knew that you were flawless

and I saw and knew that you were scarred

The rays of your ways warmed the pew

On Valentine’s Day.

No guile no malice , nor covet or con

But you took these sins and said “ be gone “

And soaked me with sweet words of grace

Til every cell Gave you a place

So I could be pure and divine

As you have made me truly thine.

I will live each day as your Valentine!

Packin’

Oh Father God

I’m so sorry to say

I went packin’ today

Down the road far away

From the church and the gun

Far away I will run

See Father God

I’m

“ different, weird, odd”

the church folks say

They don’t all agree

on Jesus , The way

So I wasn’t sure to stay

Where to

Bend

And

Bow

And

Cry

And pray

Cause everyone was packin’ this coming Sunday

Please Forgive me my father ,

I and they don’t know what we do …

We strike the ear like Peter slew

Forgive us Father

Make us one and new

Return us worshipping pew to

Pew

Til

We bow

We bend

We die for you

“And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb and by the word of his testimony. And they loved not their own lives, even unto death.”

‭‭Revelation‬ ‭12:11‬ ‭

“Then said Jesus unto him, Put up again thy sword into his place: for all they that take the sword shall perish with the sword.”

‭‭Matthew‬ ‭26:52‬ ‭KJV

Parched

His lips are like concrete cracked beneath a florescent sun

my hands are gloved blue to hold one more moistened sponge

not hyssop or wine, nor vinegar,whiskey or the enemy gall

just one drop of water, i say …” one drop , the physician says that all.”

his eyes draw open , a pool of blue thanks ,reflecting Our distant light

His eyes flicker as sparks of joy like darting fire flies in the  night

The sponge falls from my shaking fingers onto a blanket of white

” A drop is enough for now” he says”the physician may be right”

The sponge I toss with its debris to fellowship with waste

Ive so many more patients ,my care is killed by haste

The drawing of blood and plans,injections , bedpans and pills

Thinking “Is not this thirst of his the least of many ills ?”

But ….,

His “Thankyou, ” I hear follow me like a clinging child

“That will last me for today” the man said so softly and mild

I stop with pill and pan and blankets towels pillows and sheets

There comes this moment where pride drops all at Jesus’s lips and feet

“Oh have mercy my God our Father on these and mine parched soul

Oh have mercy God our Father on both us whom the “bell doth toll”

Oh have mercy God our Father, we feel one drop from  you as a stream

One drop from you is a river, breaking through heart’s concrete seams.”

For I know there’s a physician Lord over this parched nurses heart

Who gives manna and water for souls daily start

And on this very morn , I, ungrateful for a drop of blood

Still jesus quenched my lips and now to my soul ,His body , He floods

Notes:

When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue is parched with thirst, I the Lord will answer them; I the God of Israel will not forsake them.”Isaiah‬ ‭41:17‬ ‭

We all are the ” poor and needy” and God has “answered us ” by His Living water , His Son.

“I will open rivers on the bare heights, and fountains in the midst of the valleys. I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water.

that they may see and know, may consider and understand together, that the hand of the Lord has done this, the Holy One of Israel has created it.”

‭‭Isaiah‬ ‭41:18, 20‬ ‭

“Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, ‘Out of his heart will flow rivers of living water.'””

‭‭John‬ ‭7:38‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Petals For The King

There are rose petals on the sidewalk outside the Church today.

I nod to them as I walk to the chapel.

I see them lay prostrate.

Unattached alone.

Emojis of Advent.

anyone who passes can see them.

I cannot nod at those who walk beside me.

They have head down at feet

or phone.

We connect instead over petals.

Both” I “and “ they “see them

The red petals on white concrete.

It is Black Friday but the way is white.

White concrete with red rose petals.

“What is it ?“ they murmur

Our feet flatten petal then petal then petal

Some answer “ there must have been a wedding dear “

Others say“ maybe it was from a funeral in the church here “

“No no “the young lover says to his girl,

“ it’s a man tearing rose petals asking do you love me do you not ?“

“Silly brother” the little sister punches the young man

“the rose petals just fell off because they wanted to act just like the fall leaves”

Toddling beside them all ,the Youngest looks up and says

“oh no God ! You forgot to give us water ! you gave us your rose petal tears!”

Who knows why there are rose petals on the sidewalk

but the rose petals on the sidewalk they surely know.

about the day before and they were strewn From altar out the door

Strewn to open a season for the king. So we could see …

like a petal peeled from a beautiful rose

is the Eucharist from the host of heaven …

Just a little petal of his love.

Connecting us to the King .

The Arsononist

Dear Sirs ,

I write to say,

I no longer need your appraisal today.

See, There is an arsonist who inspects my house.

He gave an estimate of me since I first lost my spouse.

He looked at foundation and function ,shingles and shutters

He looked at  wood and brick , fireplace and gutters

many neighbors, like you ,came to see His face,

They saw His eyes were as fire and set like flint in place .

These too asked “should He be the one to appraise this dwelling?”

“I think I could be more trusted ” the church folks came telling

But I chose this arsonist appraiser  only because I liked His eyes

And when I let Him in my house  to my shame and surprise,

He found rot and mold , spoke” this is too condemned to be sold”

And said “now On all future occupancy  there is an eternal hold.”

Then, violently , from room to room he turned every chair and table.

With the glance of His eyes everything was destroyed and  disabled.

Sparks burned pages to ashes of  estimates and of debt

as Before His face every thing cracked even I , who wept

Finally smoke billowed from chimney as His eyes met debris

And now the house is empty and the single smoldering ember is me

Yet solid is a  large leather book  like a fire log beneath my feet

Written is an appraisal set in wood as payment for this suite.

So, sirs, I know you all mean well ,to offer insurance for my broken home

but I found His assurance is free without judgement or punitive loan

So do not worry  if  neighbors say smoke comes from where I dwell

It s just  the fire in His eyes that keeps houses like mine from a fiery Hell.

Sincerely,

a tenant

“Set me as a seal upon thine heart, as a seal upon thine arm: for love is strong as death; jealousy is cruel as the grave: the coals thereof are coals of fire, which hath a most vehement flame.”

‭‭Song of Solomon‬ ‭8:6‬ ‭KJV‬‬

 “His head and his hairs were white like wool, as white as snow; and his eyes were as a flame of fire;”

‭‭Revelation‬ ‭1:14‬ ‭KJV‬‬

 

 

 

 

Acedia

UP from  THE COUCH, away from ACEADIA , I rise

“ACEDIA  ,excuse me, I sense I must exit  to leave.

Because , It is NOW too late for me to roll up a sleeve.

Somehow now I see  I  cannot wrestle you away from this place.

I see that You  have put a choke hold on all things of  God’s grace.

ACEDIA , there is something about your ways that  bore me to death!

So now mustering a  mere  ounce of umption  I will exit for breath.

Walking OUT THE DOOR,  away from the guest ACEADIA

“Oh come Oh Come Oh Breath of God, Breathe your Breath into my Yawns!

Blow the boredom that broods from dawn to dusk then dusk to damned dawn

Oh Breath, Sweet Breath of Jesus breathe your life Breath back into my yawn!!!

RETURN Slamming the door  to berate the guest ACEADIA

Now, hear me Acedia ,will you please leave now from my  couch?

UGH, sickly you bend and twist and then rest in a slothfilled slouch!

Your company makes thumbs stiffly fidget  on tablets and  phones

Stop euthanizing my  soul!  Our God gives Life of  His to His  own.!!!!

Looking OUT THE WINDOW at snow away from the guest ACEADIA

Oh Big Breath of God blow fragments of Life  from the sacred Sky!

Wave whirlwinds of manna from places where only angels fly!

Oh Big Breath of God bring Chinock winds to thaw what’s cold alive!

So I will trade  greetings   “just exist” for calls to  ” fully thrive”

Boldly Turning back to guest ACEADIA

Out of here you !And take your gadgets  and trinkets two by two!

I’ve  fields to harvest so white that they  glisten with gospel dew!

You must be gone now!  Gone , back to hell you tempter devil of Sloth!

Off my couch now !! Ive no room for both  you and  the one I betrothed!!

My Jesus, right here , will send you away after He crushes you on your lap!

And  His foot will curse and destroy  ALL the NOON DAY DEVILS TRAP!!!!

The Door blows open and The guest , Acedia , Flees with All his devices

1 . Acedia is a state of bored restlessness . Also, called the “noon day devil” It might be seen like a fidgeting laziness that comes after the freshness of morning. It is a definite creeping boredom with things of God. Though it was first defined 350 years after Christ as one of “eight evil thoughts”, later to become one of the “seven deadly sins” , it is a most modern sin. It is modern in the sense that it is most active today in anesthetizing the “Christian” by means of its numbing effect. The modern Christian is distracted to “present as a Christian person” but not inwardly “experience being an ALIVE and ACTIVE Christian”

2.  Acedia prevalent in these “last days” leads to what Paul describes as times “where men will be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful un holy. . . . lovers of pleasure more than lovers of good. “ 2 Timothy 3:1-5

3.  Acedia , also called “sloth” ,is what King Solomon warns us ” is suicidal “. “The fool sits back and takes it easy, His sloth is slow suicide” (Ecc 4:5 (message )) and “Sloth causeth deep sleep to fall and an indolent soul doth starve” (Proverbs 19:15 ) In contrast Solomon writs of  the godly woman  “She watches the ways of her household, and bread of sloth she eats not. ” Proverbs 31:27.

4. The only means to defeat Acedia is to invite LIFE and TRUTH in the room of our HEARTS . Killing the sin of Acedia, is to invite JESUS to THROW ALL DISTRACTIONS OUT OF THE ROOM OF OUR HEARTS and welcome only the SPIRIT OF JESUS. Jesus has conquered Acedia and given us a life free of it!!!

 

 

 

 

 

My Everlasting New

I told them “time is always new when it finds its rest in you.”

I told them of days so pure yet wild , with your love so true.

How it is  lit with flashes of your Face Of never setting Rays ..

Dew drips Mercy on mornings  “Amen ” from you  oh Ancient of days.

Oh havoc of hurricanes and hate , my Enemies plead me to ” remember….”

Instead I turn in labor groan to your watch nights late in December.

I push for Glad tidings of Hope as these  Sad longings grieve to leave.

More yet more will be born Anew , Oh Lord , as with you, I push to believe!

All the while , you take my years in your  hand and thrust them into flight,

all the while you hold my face at your chest so I might become your delight!

And though I hear clocks on your wrist tick tick tock my days  to only few,

Your Open Heart will ever beat” There is Eternity for me and you !”

Father Time seems harsh to  fling  us all through such years to the Grave

But its You oh Jesus who woos me to High heaven , and guides me through this dark cave!

I love you more and more anew oh ancient one of ancient days

For Time is now swallowed by your Word and burned by its Eternal rays

I now see Our days together will be more than galaxies or stars in the sky!

I now see Your Love for me is beyond that where deepest seas lie!

Oh Ancient of Days let’s NOW plan “Whats New ” not on manmade calendar lines

For NOW my New rests in you forever, The One, I love who lives outside of time!

************************************

“I saw in the night visions, and, behold, one like the Son of man came with the clouds of heaven, and came to the Ancient of days, and they brought him near before him.”

‭‭Daniel‬ ‭7:13‬ ‭KJV‬‬

A Thanks Giving (Eucharist)

We have  no thanks to give ‘til what’s dead comes to LIFE

Our bodies code blue from a heart killed by strife.

Whats dead cannot praise ! Limp arms cannot raise!

What’s dead cannot sing!

Nor speak of a good thing!

Whats dead cannot open eyes

Or have strength of legs to rise!

Now , no thanks is there to give

Till what’s dead come to life!

We are morgues  with  doors tightly shut.

From dirt we are formed and dirt we are cut

Have mercy have mercy oh Lord let us Live!!

Let us rise from dead slumber and Thanks to you Give !

Lord have Mercy Christ Have mercy ! One breath We give today !

That your Breath May in return Blow this death away

Blow Away this Sin

Let Life return us to life again!

Let The morgue be ablaze , the door burst open.

Let Bells ring without toll as Light lets hope in. . .!

oh Son Of God, You live that We may live!

With a new heart Of thanks forever to give!

Son , You too soo dead come here to life!

Your Hands bleed red as Your body takes our strife!

Now! Thanks there is to give!

As all who are dead come to life!

Now we cannot contain or with folded arms remain.

These bodies can barely hold

this crumb of thanks our hand enfolds

Like Rivers through damns , it flows Life Afresh

and we , Giving Thanks , scream

“ we are Spirit in this Flesh”

no longer do we ask.  “ will we survive ?”

For we have Thanks to Give : for once dead we are now  alive!!!

GIVE THANKS ALL THOSE WHO LOOK UPON THE LORD IN THE LAND OF THE LIVING PSALM 27:13