The Mind

A sonnet from 2000…

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I glory not in nature but the mind.

The mind is, after all, a gift of God.

It births a wonder of another kind,

at times predictable and others odd.

In strange communication, language speaks—

through words or music or an artist’s brush,

less silent than the snow of mountain peaks.

Imagination paints a scene as lush

as Eden.  Heaven is beyond our reach.

We can’t begin to grasp the treasures there—

they go beyond our Nature or our Speech,

for there is nothing here that will compare.

But mind’s illumination lights our way.

Ideas live while natural things decay.

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When I Look Boldly into Aslan’s Face

From January 2004. A villanelle for Narnia.

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What love would hold to me in my disgrace?

Such love releases too much power to stand

when I look boldly into Aslan’s face.

His Name once made me shudder, and the chase:

For He pursued me, tore me with His hand.

What love would hold to me in my disgrace?

He died when I betrayed Him. Time nor space

could hold Him. And I knew new life was planned

when I looked boldly into Aslan’s face.

He saw me when I reached a sinful place,

and roared, and I knelt under His command.    

What love would hold to me in my disgrace?

But since I am His child, I may embrace

His mane of summer, and I call Him grand

when I look boldly into Aslan’s face.

The lion holds me always to replace

my pain through pain with joy. I understand

what love would hold to me in my disgrace

when I look boldly into Aslan’s face.

Friendship

A poem born out of an exercise in Creative Writing class in college…

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You are like cake and ice cream,

Mostly smooth chocolate covered with rich chocolate frosting

and a little blotch of vanilla coldness, melting

to cut the sweet.

You carry the scent of birthdays and of vacations,

A pleasant getaway smell permeating the room.

Big smiles whenever in rare moments we meet,

As of some secret joke sprinkling more chocolate

over the spongy cake.

We sing. We laugh, lighting candles and making wishes

before we blow them out

and eat potatoes for supper.

Abuse and Glory

From a year or two ago…

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God made a perfect world, pronounced it good

and set up everything that we would need,

built us in His own image, gave us food,

shelter, companionship, love, air to breathe,

freedom to choose. Too soon our choices led

from doubt to lies to murder and beyond.

Sin only spread like weeds the more we bred.

Each perfect gift, abused, became a bond,

despicable, tying us down to death.

Food twisted to gluttony, love turned to lust,

shelter to greed and pride, and even breath

to curses. Mercy turns all back to dust.

I wait on the promise of crooked things made straight,

God’s gifts remade in glory, our thanks more great.

Marriage and Heaven

From 2009…

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No marriage at the resurrection? Wait!
For me, perpetually single, heaven seemed
the ideal (no, only) place to find a mate.
Here on earth, whoever I have deemed
a good fit turned out crooked or too shy
of complementary. It won’t be long
before the dreaded 30 comes, and I
likely will not have marched to the wedding song.
I am not Catholic, and “sweet chastity”
is only baseline without a tempter to shun.
Must this pure zero stretch through eternity?
No! God is Love. With His reign, more will come –
Five hundred times more fulfilling than the state
Of matrimony we now celebrate.

Claustrophobia

A sonnet from 2005

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Do we decide wide things in narrow rooms,

walls without windows, cold and metal chairs

all foldable? My tired self assumes

odd postures as we try to talk of prayers,

the folded hands, bent knees, and two closed eyes.

Is a soul best heard contracted like a muscle?

God is a voyeur—endlessly He pries

like inside pockets each small heart’s corpuscle.

In birth and death, He squeezed in narrow places

and desperate masses hedged Him in for healing.

His sermons echoed broad in hilly spaces.

Friends had to drop a cripple through the ceiling.

Maybe we close, like flowers, from the cold,

wait God’s warm breath to straighten out each fold.

For Galadriel

Lady of Light! Galadriel! Your name

clings to your character and is well-kept.

You know such soothing kindness, robbed by fame,

would settle heavy as if tall trees wept.

I still can see your hands so gently draw

the water in the pitcher, and your hair

so golden, unsurpassed, that cast an awe

over even dwarves who, bowing, called you fair.

That purest elegance was almost quenched

and lost to power corrupted, absolute.

That soft voice thundered, eyes burned, till you wrenched

your soul back into light. You left me mute.

A lady worth her honor, strong in will,

you may diminish, but you’re valiant still.