Wind Blows.

A lost, green leaf, fresh plucked amidst a peaceful gale

floated down, unassumingly, into the earth’s embrace.

It found itself, once scared and timid, gently greeted;

it found a warm and friendly, caring kind of safe place.

The earth surrounded the leaf with stories of before

as the leaf gazed in awe around the place on which it lay.

The cracks of pain, raindrop tears of sorrow painted

a picture that the leaf had never seen until that one day.

The leaf in turn spoke of travels it had once braved alone

of broken dreams, a shattered, foggy past that it once had.

The earth warmed with the sun’s rays the lost leaf that rested,

this noble green leaf, partner by the earth’s fine dust clad.

A second leaf came and spun a tale of autumn past from years ago;

its red and yellows flashing brilliantly before the leaf and earth.

Its tales were tall and character loud, a welcome change to the

melancholy from the somber green leaf, who was lacking in joy’s mirth.

And so the wind came, and took the green leaf far off, never again

to see the earth’s close face, for now it was known that the sight

of brilliant plumage stole the heart of one who had been kin

and punished the sorrow of previous friend with a dark blight.

The wind carried the leaf to places near and far, ne’er stopping

until the leaf fell fast, in hopes of reaching havened ground.

But water drowned the leaf’s tears before the roaring tide

the leaf disappeared, never again heard, and never to be found.

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I Understand.

There are so many things in life that just make no sense; above all of these are the intangibles that happen.  Sometimes, I just want to let go of everything and just let the colorful language flow forth from the fountain of freestyled furor.  But then again, what’s the point?  Life’s too short to let these minor things affect me; why focus on things of the past and let them tarnish the present?  I feel like sometimes I just make it so easy to fall into the inner rage and criticism that existed before, and totally forget about showing the grace that I should be trying my best to show.  It’s so easy for us to dive into the depth of how we have been wronged and just take for granted how much we actually have received.  We don’t realize what we have until it’s too late, but why?  A Family Guy episode I watched recently actually got me thinking – it was a scene where Peter reminisces on a time where he turned down one million dollars to take Lois’s hand in marriage, and then it fast forwards to his present self reflecting on how much he would have given up for Lois back in the day.  It got me thinking, how many people are there in our own lives that we haven’t treated the same as we have from before?

Another thing that was surprising for me to learn was that when one of my predictions came true, I actually didn’t feel as bad about it as before.  I think I just resigned to the fact that life just proceeds this way.  It wasn’t that I expected something different to happen, but I feel like saying otherwise was a way for me to escape from the preconceived conclusions that festered in my mind – it was as if saying so made things alright, trying to muster up the last vestiges of hope within the capacity of my being.  But it happened, and I didn’t lose control.  God just has a weird way of doing things, I guess.  I wanted to do nothing more than be upset, but I completely lacked the conviction to be infuriated because I do believe that in some way, God has changed the way that I see things.  In my eyes, what’s happened has happened; arguing about things isn’t going to fix anything.  Move on with it, get hurt, rinse, repeat.  It sounds like a terribly depressing matter, but the blow is always softened by relying on God.  If I feel kind of distant from things, it might be the suppression of that aforementioned rage seeping to the surface in a kind of deterring mechanism that isn’t working.  Or it could be that I’m tired.  Either way, I’m just going to keep praying and holding onto things that actually matter in life.

Empty Chairs and Active Tables.

Empty chairs and active tables,

smiling faces one by one,

pass by onto learning stables

we hope to spread His Son.

 

The day ever groweth longer

as the hours pass on by.

I am weak, but soon made stronger

as friends drop in and say hi.

 

The struggle was never about me

but for His growth on this campus.

Faces colored ever slightly

drawn on the Master’s great canvas.

 

He is with us in our approach

the hi’s, hello’s, a moment?

For us to speak without a reproach

to turn one into His proponent.

 

The last hour is fast coming

the bright rays shine down in furor.

Potential choirs are a-humming

at the task that we’ve endured.

So Much Pride.

Lately, I’ve just been getting the yawning sense of despair within me that pride is becoming an issue of mine.  This is not to say that it wasn’t necessarily an issue before, but it certainly didn’t get to the point where it actually bothered my conscience.  It is perhaps the result of numerous factors that I knew could potentially boost my confidence to a dangerous level, and now I find myself standing at that level.  But, I suppose this is my first step towards improving in humility – the admission that I am proud.

This gets me to thinking about how complex of a thing humility is, and yet what a necessary component of our Christian life.  The thoughts that always run through my mind go something like this:

1) Am I proud? If yes, why, and how can I bring it back?  If not, am I sure of that, or am I deceiving myself? (Already there is a lurking measure of complete and utter self-discipline and willingness to admit to a terrifying fault.)

2) Am I humble? This is the tricky part, because if I say, yes, I’m humble, is that not in itself somewhat of a boast in my own humility? If not, where is the pride coming from, and this sends me in a vicious cycle looping back to question 1.

There are a ton of self-deprecating thoughts that follow after once I realize what a dangerous position I’m in.  Things such as guilt for not being humble, frustration at seemingly never understanding what true humility is, shame at not being able to be humble while judging others for their pride – it’s all one great, big mess.  But then I start thinking about it more and more, and I realize that true humility is when these questions and thoughts and anxieties don’t even bother showing their faces.  It’s when it becomes such a natural state of selflessness that you don’t even realize that you are, in fact, humble.  The Lord could only be an example of humility if He was paradoxically confident in His humility; however, He lived it out with His actions and it made Him the example of humility for us to follow.  Understanding this is also another interesting point of the Christian walk because then, it becomes a question of not how can I improve my humility, but rather a question of when will I let Him be my humility and boast only in what He has done in me, for me, and through me?  Humility is really still too complex of an attribute for someone as impulsive and cerebral as me to really understand, but I commit it in the hands of my Lord.

Gargoyles of Sand.

Winds of ages drying out the wrinkled skin,

a rasping breath rattles through lungs.

The bones of time creak ‘gainst each other,

sandy feel of thousand drying tongues.

Guardians of wisdom learned unto death

the answer to life’s great ask.

Through travel and travails all known

now forming the age-old old age mask.

And God has saved them all, saved them

all from becoming statues of sleep.

These standing gargoyles of sand now show

that the world is not quite half as deep.

The Angel of the Room.

A ponderous silence is borne in the midst of time run out and suffering. Languages, the tongues of the world, fill not the silence, but foment it against the oppressed.  A wail burdens greater the hearts of the visiting and the bedridden alike, the anthem of this life-forsaken corridor. Breaths once drawn linger with breaths still extracted; lungs of the past mingled with the lungs of the dying. And yet, the state of dying here is no more present than the dying the living go through – the Master of our lives has a mind indiscernible.  Time has no solace here; reminded of its mortality relative to its partakers, it flees to find some comfort in youth. And so, nurses entirely cold yet seemingly warm greet those they never hope to know or understand, simply fulfilling their duties, no more and no less.  The beauty of this task is in the eyes of the beholder; they are the sentinels of life and preservation all to themselves. Stethoscopes lay lifeless upon the shoulders of the uniformed, no clear expression painted on their masks. The vague ambience of the beige-clad room roams the premises, stifling the positive and leaving them the pensive.  Arms folded, an international symbol here in this mesh of nations.  Sighs, the war cry of its people.  The soul’s great trespass is to pick itself up in the presence of future carnage.  The carcass of hope is left at the door.  The hours sift by, the grandeur of time made an eternal jest in the face of the present.  Time is the master of life, but the hope in a greater Master alone sustains the anxious. Whatever the outcome, our great privilege is in death, dying unto a life eternal with our Lord. It is one thing to believe this and be encouraged as a spotless bystander; the passing are the fortunate unfortunate, breathing each potential last, scanning the ceiling for a glimpse of the coming Savior.

Making My Way Downtown.

There’s nothing quite like going to the restroom and scoring a touchdown.  And by scoring a touchdown, I mean taking the kids to the pool, dropping a deuce, going number two, whatever.  Point is, the relief that follows after is like the relief of knowing that you passed a test you thought you failed…except you get a chance to experience it every day.  It truly is one of the little pleasures of life.  One of the greatest parts of this corporeal episode is that you can easily increase the amount of pleasure and relief simply by waiting until the last possible moment to excrete.  The familiar signs are the uncomfortable squirming that seems uncontrollable, knowing that you tread the fine line between a tsunami of relief and soiling your trousers; the pain that starts building up in the midsection, and pretty soon it’s all that your mind is focusing on; the gaping need to expel flatulence, but not indulging in that desire for fear of, again, soiling yourself.  The perfect combination of all of these with a well-timed stroll to the nearest restroom is the immaculate recipe for a successful visit to the pool with the kids.

That being said, things can also go terribly wrong in those stalls of silent vigil.  One thing that might happen is that as you are strolling, the anticipation of relaxation mounts too high and too early, and you end up soiling yourself before you even get to have a seat and enjoy the show.  Another thing that might happen is that all the stalls are – forbid this should ever happen – taken.  But, the horror of horrors is when, after completing the task and feeling accomplished, you go for the proverbial wipe…only to discover that the integrity of your toilet paper has been compromised, leaving you in – it pains me to say it – some deep crap.  Breaking out in a cold sweat is common when one discovers that excrement is not on the toilet paper, but on the digits of your hands.  It’s like some cruel joke that fate plays out for you, that after you should believe all to be good in the world, after all the stress stored in your gut has been released, you should find yourself at the hands of the mercilessly thin and insufficiently plied toilet paper that crumbled under duress, giving way to an atrocity of hygiene.  It is indeed one of the most depressing experiences of an average middle-class life; when, at the end of the day, you find yourself swearing silently in your head and using extra pumps of soap at the faucet to try and cleanse yourself from the stains of shame.  Those accursed smears of…poo, burning a memory in your skin for the rest of the day.  Oh, what a feeling.

The Unspoken Things.

Picture the world as you know it now,

the cameras, the movies, the action, wow.

Now, look at the sky and pick out a cloud

each as puffed up as people are proud.

Vowed, never to return to this earth

a dusty angel then, never to give birth.

Alert; were this world to repine in the vine

of its drunkenness, it would be just divine

in my mind where a rhyme does reside.

Inside, a harrowing feelings does betide

as a warning of a feeling coming colder than ice;

why play nice? The clock has already wrung thrice.

Feel the veins drying up as the blood is poured out

on the streets, where a shout is heard wringing loud

the ears of the innocent, murderous people.

The blood is drained from atop the church steeple;

Knives flash light from the end of their flight

a colder steel burning through the scars of a fight.

A fleeting peace as blurred vision takes hold,

a wondrous light shatters breaths drawn cold;

the light flees nearer as dark draws further,

blasting the fairy tales that have been told.