Come Sit Beside Me, Please

wp-1489684508446.jpg

Come Sit Beside Me, Please

We all need a call to wake up
To attend to right now, right here
With a quorum of the senses reporting for duty
To cast their vote, for slow

Not like we need food and shelter and all the things in Mazlow’s hierarchy of needs
But, like we need poets and psalmists and prophets and spring
And two thin slices of white bread, to be soft enough to hold a thumbprint soft
So that when thick cut bologna bound with red wrapper and Dukes mayonnaise conjoin to Be pressed forward on the roof of one’s mouth, it’ll stick, (serving its white bread pre-Destined purpose of being bookends for meat) later requiring manual unsticking
And requiring two Diet Cokes to wash down the chips that served as a side in lieu of fresh Fruit at the deli counter  at the Harris Teeter which serves Boar’s Head beef bologna and The best salt and vinegar chips anywhere served politely by the shy but friendly silver Haired lady with the hair net that she wears with pride because she cares to follow the Rules and she cares too

Like we need a young man on a plane to remind us that twenty two year old adventurers
Have not had time to grow old and cold and jaded like the sad stooped man in 19B
Who doesn’t remember what time zone he is in or what his anniversary is or was before She left him for someone who remembered every year with a Hallmark card and a night Out on the town in her church dress and hose

But rather like we need rust on tin to prove there was a time of new and green
And how we live for low tide to find the rare left-handed conch brought in by the Preceding high tide, deliverer of treasures needing a hand to carry them home

And like we need a toe headed toddler who pats the sofa
With his sausage fat fingers and a nose that needs Kleenex
A diaper that weighs heavy with the need for changing
A pat, pat, pat
Slow as a metronome slow on the far left setting
And says “Read me ‘Good Night Moon’ again”
And only you know,
But don’t care that it’s the 23rd time, since Christmas
As he adds, “come sit beside me, please”

And you do.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Waiting On Perfection

wpid-img_20150720_185141.jpg

Waiting On Perfection

There is a fine brown line between the fig on the vine
Ripe and ready
And the fig on the tree
Still nursing at the breast of the mother-source
Hours away still
From table ready

I have stalked the tree
Begged the fruit
Pleaded and cajoled
For the sweet release of well-timed fruit

There is a dance of courtship
When waiting on perfection

My eagerness to slice the fig
Place it on a bed of young arugula
Covered, no smothered, in cotton white goat cheese
Clouds my epicurean judgement

All decision-making skills go out the window
And I
Hungry and in need
Eager, but unknowing
When to wait and when to go

Pick the time I believe is best

I would wait on perfection
If she and the tree would speak softly and lead me into the thick of the laden-branches with knowledge from the tree
Covered with pea-green youth
Whisper go or stay
Grant me the patience I do not have
Job-like and long-suffering, take pity
Gift me with Solomon-like wisdom of certainty
And precision

But I am growing older now
And I am content with imperfect figs
Deeming
Perfection grossly over-rated

For now,
I am content
Perfectly
With every shade of brown
(Partial though I must admit to Cow’s Ear Brown)
I have no use for perfect fruit
Or perfect
otherwise

++++++++++++++++++

People. I have a free subscriber-only letter. I do hope you’ve signed up. Letter One was sent last week. Letter Two releasing Friday. I think you might want to try it. Spoiler alert…  I promise it is not perfect. Just filled with grace.

The link is here. It is super simple. See you there.

.Click here (A Quiet Place For Words)

Joining Laura Boggess

When Dormancy Wakes You Up

wpid-img_20141003_104152.jpg

Orchids woo me with their elegance. If they spoke, opened up their petals as lips and breathed words, their cadence would roll off their tongues with eloquence. In their presence, I am drunk on  beauty. I study the lines of their face. Trace with my eyes the silhouette of their tender, tall strength.

I marvel and stare. Feel drawn in by their fragile soil-birthed beauty. All my senses feel alive when I am in their presence. Every stem, petal, bulb, and leaf bear something of natural wonder.

And then they leave me. Go dormant. And I struggle to care for them. I cannot seem to meet their needs. Tend to them in the proper way. They are the Rubik’s cube of my world. And then, as with many things circling around my soul places these days, I hear what I could not hear before. I really listen. I listen to things I did not formerly hear. I know. And I am renewed by their lessons.

All around my yard, in the garden, in my home, in my art, things are being born. I hold a vigil of uncertainty. I cannot seem to fall into their rhythm. I am an impatient observer and an anxious excavator of beauty. I believe that I am on guard and alert. I believe that I am eyes-wide open and prepared to receive. I am the citadel guarding the places of new birth. Caretaker of the ordinary and of my art.

But I have not allowed for the full mystery of surprise in all the ordinary and extraordinary things. I have not factored in the unknown. The goings on under the soil. The backstage preparations  behind the veil. I am not leaning into the marvelous perfection of the timing of the Spirit of God.

And trust is thrust into the light. Once again.

I feel as though I am doing my part. With my art. Wrapping my soul in words. Preparing the phases and stages of my poetry and prose to fling them out of the nest. Into the spine of a book. Out of one cradle into another. Into the places that hunger for words of hope and faith.

But this a dormant time. Ripening and waiting are part of the care package.  Waiting and trusting the unseen things is faith. Breathing out while breathing in and knowing the next breath will come and with it new mercy. That is my designated role. Trusting while breathing.


Living with hopeful expectancy.

The orchid that I held onto for a long forever will bloom a second time. The one that I almost walked to the trash can and tossed. The first one of my orchids to bloom again holds signs of beauty a second time.

The bloom is tightly held. It is wrapped and protected. It is just as it should be. Dormant and alive.

I trust my poetry and prose are held in this same place. Of tender waiting. And I trust the cradle will rock and toss a bit, yet, protect my art in every stage before the release.

The spines of a book, they may or may not be out there. But I am waiting and watching. Expecting with renewed hope and wonder. Because my orchid will bloom again.

++++++++++++++++++++

Joining beautiful writer friend and blogger Kelly Chripczuk over at A Field Of Wild Flowers

The Element of Surprise

The Element of Surprise

wpid-img_20150114_102338.jpg

And I heard
Bold prayers exploding from my lips
I wondered
Did another
Hijack my mouth
Borrow it for a moment
So I stuttered them again
To listen to myself in disbelief
Self reflecting, I checked
And
Made sure it was my heart
Leaking out around me
Rising up to Haven
In honest, humble ways

I came upon the narcissus in my yard
And felt how un-January of you
Bold and tender, white and frail
You seem more like Easter new to me
Yet I find
Your unique voice
Is  welcome here
Sitting, singing in the winter’s cold
For I know this is the time
Marked for
Blooming forth in honest ways

I almost called the manager
Suggested there was some mistake
So much beauty could be mine
For  $2.99, bouquet of luscious greens
As though the eucalyptus
Said pardon me and asked
If I would take her fragrance home
Where
She made promises
To sit by me while writing
In sweet and pungent, honest ways

Cancer news comes through the phone
Loss and disappointment crawl scrawled across my screen
My insides cry in wrenching sympathetic pain
For them, for all mankind
The earth is spinning wild and fast
And I am, yet still surprised
By the mix of joy and pain

But I will stand on hope
And recall the roses’ thorns
Small tight blooms, hold wonder
Unpicked, not ripe or ready yet
Hold their secrets, tucked
Still growing, on
The well-armed bush

Yet
In time’s fullness
Our moments will come
Birthed
In radiant fullness
Glory’s
Extravagant beauty
Poured out on the Earth

We will sing Hallelujah’s loud

And  bow in holy gratitude

Weep wet oceans of our humble thanks
For the pregnant
Waiting
Laced with scared hope
And rejoice in honest ways for
The unveiling
And

the mysterious
element of surprise