Day Broke Me Open

They passed by.

The waves of storms rolled toward sunrise.

To the west a rainbow was pierced

with a serrated knife of electricity.

To the east tufts of clouds

like pale pink umbrellas hung.

 

Intervals of solid rain tucked me

under the soffit to read.

Ann wrote about the pursuit of beauty

and there I was under it, in it.

 

Praise had come as rain.

Praise left my mouth.

Praise was sent to find the source of beauty.

 

My most significant Other read to me poetry.

I heard His inflections and cadence.

Oh my God, I am undone,

yet what better place to be unraveled

than under an umbrella with You.

 

“Doubt the philosophies, doubt the prophecies, doubt the Pharisees (especially the ones seen in mirrors), but Who can doubt this, Beauty? Beauty requires no justification, no explanation; it simply is and transcends. See beauty and we know it  in the marrow, even if we have no words for it: Someone is behind it, in it. Beauty Himself completes.” Ann Voskamp, One Thousand Gifts

Beauty Beyond Words, and Yet I Want Them So Badly.

Vincent, come and tell me what to say.

 

I am afraid.

The beauty startled me

so I came back to capture it.

Bring your brush-sickle

and lop off that bale like an ear.

 

Forgive me for projecting on you.

 

It’s not words, but my words

that lie like straw gleanings

through the stubble.

 

I thought of you first

to show me how stroke texture

and vibrancy with syllables.

 

You were self inflicted,

but your brush with faith

incited you to a beauty beyond

and you welcomed me

to whisper by your left lobe

“I see it too.”

 

Oil my word economy

and layer it in gobs

as age and color magnify.

 

Image taken from my iPhone.

 

This is a print of Vincent’s

 

 

Mercy Morning; Fresh Light

Caps of cumulus grab the first light

and float like golden vanilla scoops.

Blue grey fitted sheets crawl

beneath the infusion of pastels.

The sun brush strokes a new day.

 

When I close my eyes the leaves,

combed with cooler breezes,

mimic waves from Lake Michigan.

The blue noise settles my soul

and I receive this gift of Another.

 

*

 

“Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,

because His compassions fail not.

They are new every morning;

Great is Your faithfulness.

‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul,

‘Therefore I hope in Him!’”

Lamentations 3:22-24 The New King James Bible

 

 

 

 

Strength and Beauty. Truth and Grace

Photo: Strength and beauty remind me of truth and grace

I see stuff like this every day. This was yesterday. I had to walk about fifty yards off the road to get a good shot. Sometimes the photos are captured right on to my facebook page to invite my social media friends to look with me. I will add a caption for thought or humor…words are what I do, I can’t help me self. It took me a few more deliveries to find words for these horses and when they came they read:

Strength and beauty remind me of truth and grace.

One of my favorite movies is one from the eighties called The Man from Snowy River. There are horses everywhere in this film. The artsy cinematography endows these creatures with a bigger than life air around the human plot which unfolds. Their beauty and strength are front and center and one of the lines I remember is when Spur says to his nephew Jim, “A man without a horse is like a man without legs.” Man’s best friend the canine was usurped by the equine, in this film anyway.

Well, these in the picture above put legs on my thoughts and I began to roll with the motion of a canter then a gallop mentally. These harbingers of strength and beauty got me thinking about what I feel are the parallel concepts of truth and grace. Please know again, I am not a theologian, I am a receiver of the God given creation around me. God’s artistry is often a catalyst of the transcendent messages I take in through the senses.

Truth and grace seem to be distant cousins at best on the surface of things. Hold on a sec.

Try them on individually.

The huge muscles of a horse represent the concept of truth to me. Truth is strong. Truth is fibrous. Truth is power.

And yet…

Without the movement called grace, truth is just intellectual assent. Without grace, truth cannot be translated into understanding. Understanding is the application of truth.

The horses standing there were majestic and all, but if they started moving, started galloping I would have hung around for a bit.

My seventeen year old daughter noticed a few things I posted on facebook using the word grace and she shared with me the definition from the original Strong’s concordance.

Grace: God’s divine influence upon the heart and its reflection in life.

Whoa horsie! Really? That definition is gonna take us for ride, is it not? I’ll admit I sometimes don’t want God’s influence on or in my life. But who really wants to sit on a horse that doesn’t move, eh?

Spur was right…”A man (or woman) without a horse is like a man (or woman) without legs. Heeyah! Giddyup! Get along now!

 

“And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth…And of His fullness we have all received, and grace for grace. For the law was given through Moses, but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.” John 14, 16, and 17 New King James Bible

The Beauty Of A Thin Line. Buena Vista.

My wife, in passing,

let me know she needed

some plucking.

Her brows, the extension

of beautiful brown eyes.

 

This day there was a sliver

of a cloud in the half light

of the new vista.

It was like an eyebrow

above the horizon.

 

Did God pull density

out of the cirrus ice

to leave a slender line?

Is the blue-green iris

of the earth highlighted

by a thin arc on the temple

of the sky?

Transposition: The Heat Of Light Has Its Effects.

 

The cloudscape

scraped the sides,

and wayward beams

invaded the lows.

A push down

and in.

Strands of yellow

light weaved

where fog

and mist

were wrested.

The quilted air

pried from

the sculpted knolls

was lifted by

a yellow oscillation.

Together, they were

a secret.

Separate, they are

a mystery.

 

Genesis 1:3

 

 

Photo courtesy of Jessica Szopinski. Guatemala

Back Seat Love: Come on, it’s not what you think.

I know,

is the back seat really a place for love?

In one respect, I think not…

But hold on a minute,

I’m talking about love.

 

I dreamt I was a taxi driver,

in and out of traffic and jams.

My light was on, waiting for a whistle or a hand.

She got in and sat in the middle back.

The rear view cropped her face.

Her brown eyes caught mine in the mirror.

 

“Just drive a bit,” she said calmly.

I nodded and pulled back out into it.

She smiled her eyes and

I think I smiled mine back.

 

“So, any destination in mind?”

“Life.”

“Ah, sure, is that near West 42nd Street?”

“You never know.”

“Well, I will never know if you don’t tell me.”

 

She winked and fully opened her eyes,

briefly exposing the whites like teeth.

Somewhere, I heard the eyes are the window to the soul.

What a beautiful window.

I thought I saw her soul…even more beautiful.

She leaned forward with her chin

nestled in her forearms.

 

“Don’t worry,” she said, “I am not in a hurry.”

“I’m starting to get that.  What about the meter?”

“Keep it running, where I want to go is priceless.”

 

I took one hand off the wheel and relaxed a little.

“A taxi driver not knowing where he is going…”

“…is a nice diversion,” she whispered.

“Wait a minute, you just hinted at a destination.”

“I suppose I did, but you are the driver.  Without you,

I am not going anywhere,” she sang with a smirk.

“What kind of Jell-o logic is that?”

“Oh, let’s not get strapped too tightly into logic.”

 

I took a cleansing breath.  “Jell-o,” I said flatly.

 

She sat back in the seat and stared in the mirror.

“What?” I said.

She brushed the band of brown hair from her eyes

and tucked it behind one ear.

She said softly, “Look into my eyes.

I know you saw it the first time.

That’s right. It’s the beauty beyond the eyes.”

I did see it.

I pulled over and the tears in my eyes magnified

the beauty I saw in hers.

I felt something jump into me.

“That’s where I was hoping to go,” She said as she

handed me the fare and walked away.

 

God is love and is closer than you think.

“I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you;

I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.”  Ezekiel 36:26

Pull over, out of the traffic for a moment and look into the eyes of the lover of your soul; Jesus.

Reflections on a Ballerina

 

You were found

right before first position,

just for a while.

 

We brushed prayers out and up

for beauty not to be fleeting,

just for a while.

 

We rubbed our toes in your chalk

pictures on the driveway,

just for a while.

 

Our arms were extended,

flowing like a swan’s,

just for a while.

 

And we gathered you

under our wings,

just for a while,

 

because,

in a while

you will dance.