Promise Me

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Promise Me

You will
find love in the places where love is hard
and learn to know it there
Walk the trail that’s hard to blaze
Pressing on, though tripping up
On a broken wing and a cryptic prayer
Your walk will be marked by the limp of grace
Mercy, your salve on every blistered place
Remember the Psalms of Ascent
Came before

Contemplate every word that expires from your lips’ breath
And know with certainty
That each word was first birthed
From the inspiration placed in the well
within (where the echoes grow)
Remember that “think comes before speak and pray comes before it all”
And pride comes before the fall

Promise me
That excellence will find you seeking it
And it will mark the work of your hands

You won’t permit perfectionism
To entangle you, hold you captive
Wrap you up in the bonds of your own creation
Bury you in the mire of doubt
“Carry on” will be your anthem song

As you blaze root-laden trails
Settle without settling
(the third cousin of compromise)
Compromise, the first cousin of grace,
Can yield “and it was very good.”

You’ll always remember
That proximity of heart can be hard to maintain
But never let distance, brokenness, and pride
Place a wedge the size of east Texas
Between you and anyone
You love big back

Promise me you will make peace with
Both and
And
Tough and tender
Fragile and strong
And there are more
You know them well
Just promise me

You will always remember
The world is filled with grand and glorious wonder
Waiting
And there is more where that came from

 

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Lord Have Mercy – The Commingling of Joy and Grief

 

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Lord Have Mercy  – The Commingling of Grief and Joy

Full, bloated with beauty. A half a century plus eight years of looking up, I wonder again how the crevices, shadows, and craters, and chunks— wholly, holy cheese (a poet’s words not an astronomer’s terms)— are visible from Earth. I wondered how it seemed to have swallowed up all the light. Every glint and glimmer of the sun’s beams, transformed them into moon beams. In that blink.

The one between the set and rise, the pas deux of earth and sky.

Physicists and psalmists and poets and God knows on this one thing we can surely agree. We’ve never stop looking up at the blinding moon, man or no man.

Achingly we hold on to all it sends our way.

Night on night, the singleness of its trajectory appears to be aimed right at my broken heart.

This journey through my window pane, via crossbars in the crosshairs on a violent night here on Mother Earth. Full bloated with pain.

The explanation was Google-able. But I needed only magic and mystery. No explanation would console me, no explanation for the orb’s blinding grace would soothe me into understanding.

Radiant beauty that blinded me the night the evil rained down in Vegas was bound for Earth, a long forever, ago. And will be forever more.

Two unexplainable facts. Beauty, moving me to tears. One eye cried tears from the beautiful. One eye cried from the pain.

Lord have mercy on the ones. Whose soul windows are bloated with commingled saline tears. Blessed are the ones whose cheeks were tear stained.

The night the bullets rained down in Vegas, Lord have mercy on that night.

That night the moon refused to refuse to shine.

My eyes, my spirit, that night, as blue as a pair of full blue moons. Every once in awhile the tears run rapid down the cheeks, a race to the finish line.

The point where grief heals all wounds, mends all things, bears all things. Love.

And still.

The world is bloated.

With beauty.

Maybe

Maybe

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Maybe the light is always just right.

Maybe we are standing a quarter inch off of where we need to be to see.

Maybe the slant is always pouring in with just the perfect amount of glint and shadow

To show us where to cast our eyes.

Perhaps we moved at the speed of un-noticing all those years ago. And left the beauty in 

A blur.

Perhaps the Light is always just right.

Afterall.

And sacred ordinary was always waiting to have its time of quiet hallelujah, with you 

And you alone.

Maybe the Light is always just right.

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When the Wind Blows

When the Wind Blows

When the wind blows you remember an out take of a scene from the grainy sepia parts of The Wizard of Oz
And you find you are only slightly braver than the child who watched the film, scared of the parts you already know, scenes you’d seen a hundred times
Scared in new ways, of old things
Strange things like flying monkeys, houses on legs shod in red sparkly shoes, and spinning things

When the wind blows you remember that it won’t last forever
The wind and the rain and the storm and the grey

You remember the Psalms and the promises
And old poems written about the wind years ago
An alphabet of hurricanes ago, 2013, now life-times ago
Time measured by storms

And you find that every promise held
Just as was spoken and written
Every anchor metaphor was not a metaphor after all
But a Holder, a Counter-Weight and a Calmer of the Seas

As you held on to your dreams
Of words and poetry
You were held

And as you are holding tighter still to the days that follow the storm

And realize you are no longer scared
Of old things in new ways
Or the new ways of old things
That used to scare you

Now you are brave
When the wind blows