Stay

Checking back
To feel the breeze.
Sniffing the aroma,
On my knees.

Self-conscious,
In the extreme.
Hollow words
Squishing me.

Maybe not
So meaningful,
Or the meaning
Is lost on you.

Can we meet,
Perhaps, half way?
Can we call
A truce today?

Will there be
Better days?
Will we find
A nicer way

To communicate
And vent?
Are you out of
Shape, now bent?

Let’s surrender
Finer points.
Come together,
Despite the noise.

We can do it,
If we try.
Making up,
So we don’t cry.

Lovely words
Don’t mean a thing,
If we can’t
Our souls bring

To the table,
Compromise.
Banish all our
Little lies.

We will find
A better way
To make peace
So, please, do stay.

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A Loving Heart, and A Choice

A very long time ago,
God was hanging out with himself,
And he was in a creative,
Spontaneous kind of mood.

He thought to himself,
“Hmm…wonder what it would be like
To hang out with other beings?
Maybe it would be cool.

So he mustered up
All his creative talents,
And pulled out a few
Tricks from his bag,

And he said, “I will create
Beings like me,
I will give them a heart and soul,
And a spirit like mine.

I will put a spark of myself
Deep down inside them,
But I will do more than that.
I will make them free

To accept me or reject me,
To love or to hate,
To worship me or worship themselves,
To choose good or evil.

And so God did it.
He created us.
But we were not satisfied
To be what we were.

We wanted to be gods ourselves.
We wanted to rule,
To have power like God,
To give life, and to take it away.

So, God stepped back,
Knowing the outcome
Would not be good,
Since the only way to stop us

Would be to kill us,
And he loved us too much
And enjoyed his creation,
Despite its faults.

So, we built castles and kingdoms,
Formed weapons and walls,
Fought for power over each other,
Killing each other and ourselves.

God saw all this,
And it grieved his heart,
Because he knew what he must do.
God knew he must give his own life

To save us from ourselves.
So, God put his seed inside a woman,
And was born into his own creation.
He existed as one of us,

With all the faults and afflictions,
That we experienced,
And he suffered and hurt like us,
And we treated him with cruelty.

God was one of us,
And yet he did not make
The same choice that we made.
After all, he was already God.

So, he made a better choice,
A choice that we refused to make.
He chose to give his own life
To reap an eternal justice,

And to restore us to himself.
For we had drifted far away from him
In our hearts. We had all but forgotten
What it was like to love.

But God did something else
For his beloved creations.
He lived with us for a while,
He talked, walked and dined with us.

He healed and blessed us.
He pushed away the confusion
And turmoil that had grown inside us.
He gave us peace in our hearts,

A peace that we had exchanged
A long time ago, for power that we
Could not handle,
And violence that ripped us apart.

As he did this, some of us
Saw ourselves for whom
We really were.
We saw all the ugly thoughts we had.

We became restless,
We resented these revelations
About ourselves.
And instead of allowing

God to heal us,
We became angry
At ourselves, at each other,
And at him.

So, we did what God knew
We would do.
We took God to a very sad place,
And we punished him,

We pushed him away in our hearts,
We hurt him with all our might.
We tried to snuff God out
Of our memories and our dreams.

So, for a short time,
God let us think
That we had won.
He let us think that he was gone.

But he could not stay away.
Indeed, he had never really left.
We were just fooling ourselves
And each other, believing the lies

We wanted to believe.
God had something much better in mind,
Something greater
Than we could ask or imagine.

He gave us himself.
He entered our hearts
Through the power of his death.
He helped us to return

To the place we were before,
When things in this world
Were peaceful and beautiful,
Inside and out.

He gave us what he called
Grace and truth.
He brought us back
From the wretched disease

That we had embraced
Instead of love.
He put his love for us
Deep down in our hearts,

Once again,
And he gave us another choice,
And another, and another.
He just kept healing and loving us.

And so the circle continues.
It goes on forever,
To the end of the world,
God loving his creation.

So, what will you choose?

A Time to Every Purpose

To many Christians, Christmas is just another opportunity to talk about the resurrection and God’s forgiveness. I like the way he puts it in this poem, that Christmas is a time to focus on hope and healing. God does so much more for us besides forgiveness. It’s not just about sin. Think about the miracle of creation. Think about how God watches over us, protects us, guides us, loves us, heals us. He is our perfect companion. He is our friend. He is our father, in every sense of that word. And look at all Jesus taught us. Don’t just focus on the end of his life. Focus on his entire life. He did so much more than die. He lived! And what a miraculous life it was. A perfect life. A life of love. And it all began with his birth.

Poesy plus Polemics

"Holy Family" Painting by Heidi Malott From hmalott.blogspot.com “Holy Family”
Painting by Heidi Malott
From hmalott.blogspot.com

remember the birth
even more than the life
of the man who would die
in eclipse of our sins

in the birth is the promise
the possible everything
each newborn babe
a most lovely creation
immaculate vessel
containing all human
potential the heights of
all mortal achievements
the deepest divinely
held hopes for mankind

even more than the life
of the man who would die
in eclipse of our sins
remember the birth

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Torn Between Two Worlds

Believers and non believers,
Right? Or wrong?
Or left?
Straight or gay?
Black or white?
Christian or atheist?
Jew or Gentile?
Intellectual or activist?
Proactive or reactive?
Caught in between
A rock and a knife.
A life of beauty
And the torment of hell.
Thoughts of today
Sometimes cloud over
Visions of the eternal.
Heartbreak
Threatens healing,
And purity
Is tainted by worldliness.
To experience
Or to dream?
To be a visionary
Or to just be practical?
Life pulls us
Every which way.
It is a delicate balance,
Sharp as a razor,
With bottomless pits
On both sides,
Waiting to swallow up
Whomever is the next victim.
Eh, batter, batter!
Come on, batter!
Screams from the outfield
Mock us as we play,
As we fight with all our hearts,
Sometimes feeling like
We’re losing our minds.
Am I a hypocrite,
Because I challenge
And criticize
Those I love so dearly?
Am I a traitor,
Because I disagree
Passionately,
Yet I dine with sinners?
And what of the rulers,
The priests, the teachers?
The rich, young men
With all the sparkle in their eye,
Their future bubbling with potential?
Love God,
And love your neighbor.
Show mercy.
Be a part of the solution,
Not the problem.
Hang with the lepers,
The prostitutes,
The tax collectors,
The children.
Let them all
Come to me.
Take half a step forward,
And he will take three,
Because he loves you.
Treat everyone
With respect.
Do not worship any man.
Every kingdom
Will one day fall.
Between truth and love,
Choose love,
Because truth hides
In a misty cloud,
Invisible to all
But children
And the insane.
They see clearly,
As we fool ourselves
With lie after lie,
Wishing ourselves
Into a fantasy world
Full of temptation
And torture.
Come lay your burdens
By the riverside.
Be clean.
Be one with all.
It is all of us,
We are all the same,
Forever.
Amen.

More Bloodshed, More Grief: Is It Time Yet to End This?

For those of you who haven’t heard, two police officers were ambushed this week in their police car and murdered by a black man.

I’m sure some of my white friends and family are chalking this up to one more angry black man taking justice into his own hands and all the persecution towards police lately is to blame. And you probably feel that your anger at blacks is now justified. But you know I’m not going to go for that.

Ask yourself this: Do you honestly think black people break the law anymore than white people? You might look at our courts, jails and prisons, and make that conclusion–but you would be wrong. The reason they are there and whites are not, is simply because they are patrolled, watched, harassed, accused, investigated, prosecuted, charged and convicted more. These things are done, because whites see blacks as the enemy: the thieves, the druggies, the gang members, the murderers and the rapists. The sad thing is, whites do all these things as well, but they usually get away with it, or at least, if they are caught (which is not likely, since they are not as vulnerable as blacks to surveillance, and in many cases, harassment), they are not charged (whites get warnings much more than blacks); if they are charged, and especially if they are a police officer, their case is dismissed before even being able to present evidence; if they are tried, they are not convicted; if they are convicted, they are given a much lighter sentence, and rarely prison time, even if their crime was the same crime for which a black man is imprisoned, or even executed.

Another difference, when something like this happens, white people get justice. Their cries are heard. These fallen officers will be honored, and their killer, if he lives, will receive the harshest penalty imaginable. This is because they are white, they are police officers (who can do no wrong, apparently), and he is black, one more criminal to punish, and, worse, a black man that didn’t keep in his place. Only fifty years ago, he would be tortured and lynched, and today they’ll do whatever is in their power to punish him with impunity, making sure this black man, and all black men like him, know their place, and who really holds the power in this country.

You can complain all you want about protests, riots, blog posts, Facebook rants, whatever. But this issue is here to stay, until blacks are treated with the dignity and respect they deserve. They will continue to demand it, and there will continue to be more bloodshed on both sides, until whites take responsibility for their actions towards all oppressed people, all around the world.

Oppression and Violence in the USA

This is a repost of thoughts I put on Facebook earlier today. I figured I’d reach a different audience this way…

The United States has a unique and very complex problem with oppression and violence. It is unique because our country is the most powerful country in the world. It is a problem, not only because we use violence to control our enemies, but because our culture teaches us that any violence is always justified towards our enemies, that those in power can do whatever they want to those that are powerless, as long as that person has been labeled as an enemy; and that the oppressed are the enemy, so any violence done to them is justified. Does everyone now see the problem? If not, please read the attached article from Wikipedia on structural (and cultural) violence. I thought it was also interesting that there is no main entry for cultural violence. Hmmm…

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structural_violence“>
(Structural [and Cultural] Violence)

Antagony

Love this one, as I can relate. Feel this way a lot, really.

Poesy plus Polemics

"Alter Ego" Painting by Luis Duro From ego-alterego.com “Alter Ego”
Painting by Luis Duro
From ego-alterego.com

the world next door
behind my brain
mirror images
shimmer the
cranial ether
filling the space
in between us
the distance
dividing me here
from me there
one or both
of us real each
compelled by a
skeptic’s mistrust
turns away from
the other looking
off in opposing
directions of dreams
same but different
shared memories
spiked with conflicting
emotions one mind
with dissimilar
thoughts hiding
hard painful lines
metaphysical edges
the dual jagged blades
of antagony under
a single thin smile

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What We Don’t Know

Wise words. Perhaps, we need to ask God to change our hearts, so that our minds will be ready to accept where he is leading us.

Wordsmith's Desk

All too often, we inheritors of human nature, sum up people and situations with less than all of the facts. Even the word fact verses hearsay should be a concern. The news is hearsay, as well as what anyone tells us. How readily are conclusions formed on less than everything there is to know.

Then, there is the one clincher that we haven’t accomplished…walking a mile in someone’s shoes. You see, it’s not what we think we know, but what we don’t know that matters. There will always be blanks in our knowledge, but acceptance doesn’t require knowing with our minds…acceptance only asks us to believe with our hearts.

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