Archive for the ‘Poetry’ Category

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On any given day…

January 25, 2017

mccrae-water

On any given day

you just don’t know

which demons from history’s distant land

will walk in through the door

and say “I’ve come to shake your hand”

 

On any given day

you just don’t know

what strange log will fall

right in your way

diverting your steps a little

on that given day

and bending around

so as not to have faltered

you well may be saved

but your path ever altered

 

On any given day

you just don’t know

what new story you will hear

and so make lies of a truth

you had once held dear

or what your eyes

will yet perceive

making true what you dared not

before believe.

 

On any given day

you just don’t know

with what labour

the hour shall be tasked

that  yesterday you could not

have imagined being asked

On any given day.

 

Any given day is but

a gift  unknown unseen

any given day

these fraught and fragile futures

that have – as yet – never been

which on any given day

can unwrapped and opened be

for those who any given day would dare

and are given gifted free.

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friend

August 22, 2016
how is it that all

my jolts and quakes

don't scare you away -

though I fear you stay

only in duty


how is it you see

the cracks and breaks

where nothing fits

my bloodied bits

as if beholding a beauty?

 

how is it beyond

my stutters and shakes

your patience hears

the truth in tears

and resonance rolls
 
between souls, 

bared

 

i sense your stomach turns

and your heart near fails

at my gruesome tales

yet you do not flee

but peer in closer and see

a thing to be held and healed

to be longed for and loved

a life to be whole

if dared.

friend










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four o clock brain

September 28, 2015

the four o’clock brain
wrings itself out
all its putrid dishwater
the mopped up
thoughts and feelings
dripping down
the inside of my skull
befouling the backs of my eyeballs

twitches and sounds
disrupt my rest
but I am the source of the disturbance
instinctively,

I rise to act

to distract
boil the kettle
wash the day’s past dishes
[always wise to leave a task for such a purpose]
make coffee
escape into the garden

the moon was large
and beautiful
and too bright to look at directly
this morning at 4:30 am.
Just for about 20 minutes
before it sank below the city horizon
I sat and stared at it
through the filter of the dark branches
of the liquid amber
while a single magpie
sang over me
sang over the morning

what strange prayers
we humans pray
stuck in our moment
yet conversing with eternity

what strange faith
I have received
that I would whisper words to God
at four and five in the morning
and expect to be heard
when a magpie carol
much sweeter sounds can offer

other birds sang
in complex layered loops
far off
and the gently the hum of the freeway
below me
rose and rose
restoring to my awareness
the other humans
the world

the cool fresh on my cheek
the hot cup in my hand
the huff of my breath
visible warmth in the chill air before me
evidence that I am alive

I down my coffee
bringing familiar comfort
bringing the flavour of courage
to close my eyes
and take my crumpled mind,
now rinsed and flapped and flattened a bit
still a little damp
inside the house
and I sleep again.

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Good friday confusion

April 18, 2014

Image 

this bloody man

this strung-up, beaten,
defeated,leaking, howling man

his death row, death-throe gibberish still confusing me:
‘forgive them, for they don’t know what they are doing’
how can that be good-friday theology?

Don’t you mean ‘forgive them because

they have confessed and repented

with a contrite heart

and a willing obedience to change their behaviour

in conformity with your holy laws?’
no?

Over all the comos
you bleed all over us
your boundaries all torn and transgress’d
quicker than we can mop you up
you make more bleeding mess

if you are god and human
if you are innocent but convicted guilty
if you are manly yet ravaged like a defenceless woman
if you are wise yet inarticulate
if you are abused yet forgive
if you are holy yet god-forsaken

are not all our sortings, all our categories,
all our wrongs and rights made strangely to bleed into one another?

the way a dead-end, the truth is belied,
and the greatest of these – the life – has died
serious scribes joke and jeer
atoning priests accuse
passers by just poke and peer
see how Romans deal with Jews?

the sky is black in height of day
the dead rise from their graves
the executor salutes the damned
one bandit bandies brave
one thief in paradise is sent
and Son of God is hell-bent

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Love will have the day

March 18, 2014

I cannot claim to know

Too much I should not say

Don’t see where this will go

But here’s what I dare pray

 

All will be well 

All will be well

All will be well

As far as I can tell

 

Here’s the hope I hold

Here’s the faith I bring

Here let grace unfold

Here let mercy sing

 

All will be well

All wil be well

All will be well

As far as I can tell

 

Find the life that heals

Find the life that mends

Live the life that feels

Live the life that spends

 

Find the life that gives

Find the life that pours

Find the life of grace

Find the life that’s yours

 

All will be well

All will be well

 All will be well

As far as I can tell

 

Love will have the day

Love will have the day

Love will have the day

As far as I can say.

Image

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the first twenty times your heart gets broken

December 9, 2013

Cranach the Elder, The Good Thief, 1501-02the first twenty times your heart gets broken

it feels as if you will die

and then even worse than the pain

feels the fact that you haven’t died

and are still living

yet

broken in bits

but after number twenty

or perhaps twenty one

or twenty two

around there somewhere

you become accustomed to the rhythm

the break, the bleed, the mess,

the seizing up, the sting, the raw,

the wound, the weep, the scab:

the numb,

and if you are lucky

the heal.

and it becomes painfully yet manageably familiar.

you know what to do

what to expect

you know you won’t bleed out completely

you know your blood isn’t that thin

it is ironically strong and thick with love

and clots well

doesn’t it just?

but every so often in the next one hundred breaks

there are odd times that the rhythm doesn’t follow

you just plain break

and there you are

open and exposed

jagged edges

out and in

no safe place to lay your hand to hold the pain

no safe place for another to offer a steady hand of comfort

Yet…if you must be so stretched out vulnerable

and pierced

it may be that you look to one side

and there see one

like you

bloodied and broken

heart betrayed, besmeared, bereft

and it may be that you breathe out a prayer

to die

but let it be to die with this one

for he dies alongside

and so in his death and yours

to meet

and in meeting

be met by Love.

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Poems from the Cave III

September 3, 2013

Do not mistake my passion for courage

Nor my love for rightness

I cannot be right about the world, I cannot be sure at all,

But neither can I resist loving it anyway

– when i sense so deeply that it is originally and essentially of God.

Even if I am wrong about this,

which I cannot know, nor can you,

if i sense something is of God,

dare i not love it?

This passion stands not on confidence,

 nor even on conviction

And especially it does not make me brave,

though how i wish it did.

It leaves me

fragile but compelled to care

vulnerable but driven to love

broken but unflinching in devotion

It redeems and yet rends me

barely able to breathe

twitching my toes on the bridge of insanity

and with words and language left behind

several miles back

at the last stop.

Yet it calls and carries me

and is enough

Enough

to heal

to feed

to nourish

to reeconcile

to embrace

to sustain

to revive

to enchant

to delight

to inspire

to overflow

to fuel

faith without seeing

grace without guarding

love without knowing.

So don’t mistake

this passion for courage

or love for rightness