Archive for November, 2015

Do you feel unknown?
I want to know you.
Do you feel unloved?
I love you,
and I want to love you more.

I won’t kick down the door.
I’ll ask for the key.
If you leave the door open,
I can come in
where you are.

I have a flame
cupped in-between my two hands,
and it is bright,
and very warm.
It’s only fire.

Don’t be afraid.

See? When I open my fingers,
the shadows play
on the walls,
and we remember
what it is like to be children.

I want to share
my light with you.
I want your hands
to be warm.
My heart says

yes to your heart,
yes to a mystery,
yes to your songs,
yes to your eyes,
yes to whatever may come.


Blessed are those whose strength is in you, in whose heart are the highways to Zion. As they go through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs. The early rain also covers it with pools. They go from strength to strength, and each one appears before God in Zion.

Psalm 84: 5-7

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“On the girl’s brown legs there were many small white scars. I was thinking, Do those scars cover the whole of you, like the stars and the moons on your dress? I thought that would be pretty too, and I ask you right here please to agree with me that a scar is never ugly. That is what the scar makers want us to think. But you and I, we must make an agreement to defy them. We must see all scars as beauty. Okay? This will be our secret. Because take it from me, a scar does not form on the dying. A scar means, I survived.”
― Chris CleaveLittle Bee

“Sad words are just another beauty. A sad story means, this storyteller is alive. The next thing you know something fine will happen to her, something marvelous, and then she will turn around and smile.”
― Chris CleaveLittle Bee

“I was carrying two cargoes. Yes, one of them was horror, but the other one was hope.”
― Chris CleaveLittle Bee

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God of Hope

Screen Shot 2015-11-22 at 8.37.39 PM

Thoughts on Butterflies

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Trees on a Fall Morning


There’s something sad
about a lonely leaf
fallen from her tree –
as if all the world, grown cold and dark,
could not love her sufficiently.


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“But when I am truly old and unafraid, I will sit by my garden at dawn, watch the sunflower gods push dirt inside, their golden heads rising like feathered morning stars. Perhaps then I will hear another mother and father sighing in the trees, my lost sister singing with mermaids.”

~ Sara Claytor, lines from “Heeding Other Worlds”

“A full moon creates lit pathways across our backyard,
illuminates the fish pond, tinkles across its dark water
like fingertips lightly caressing piano keys, then
slides between stars and opaque clouds.
Others watch this moon.”

~ Sara Claytor, lines from “What the Night Contains”

“But you will reach a turning point
bonded in barbed wire memories —
you are now stitched together with threads,
you can maneuver the eye of the needle,
seek pieces of your life left behind”

~ Sara Claytor, lines from “Five Perspectives of Love (and Loss)”

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That’s when the Divine strolls through the sweet scents
of wild honeysuckle, sparkling crown in her hair –-
she knows how to wait, seek shelter in a stable.
We know there’s a hole in the sea, somewhere,
a floating bottle with faded ink message and an image,
a perfect image magnified through the glass, so we wait
for words in the water, words whispered by God or ghosts
or the wrath of Moses — we hear the sound —

reverberating voice of the sea (ll. 9-18)

Sara Clayton
Waiting on Unknown Roads


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I want to die while you love me,  
  While yet you hold me fair,  
While laughter lies upon my lips  
  And lights are in my hair.  
I want to die while you love me,         
  And bear to that still bed,  
Your kisses turbulent, unspent  
  To warm me when I’m dead.  
I want to die while you love me  
  Oh, who would care to live         
Till love has nothing more to ask  
  And nothing more to give?  
I want to die while you love me  
  And never, never see  
The glory of this perfect day       
  Grow dim or cease to be!

Georgia Douglas Johnson

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1 God is our refuge and strength,
    a very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way,
    though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea,
though its waters roar and foam,
    though the mountains tremble at its swelling. Selah

There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
    the holy habitation of the Most High.
God is in the midst of her; she shall not be moved;
    God will help her when morning dawns.
The nations rage, the kingdoms totter;
    he utters his voice, the earth melts.
The Lord of hosts is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah

Come, behold the works of the Lord,
    how he has brought desolations on the earth.
He makes wars cease to the end of the earth;
    he breaks the bow and shatters the spear;
    he burns the chariots with fire.
10 “Be still, and know that I am God.
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth!”
11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
    the God of Jacob is our fortress. Selah

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Paris in the Fall

“Autumn Day” by Rainer Maria Rilke

Lord: it is time.
The summer was immense.

Lay your shadow on the sundials
and let loose the wind in the fields.

Bid the last fruits to be full;
give them another two more southerly days,
press them to ripeness, and chase
the last sweetness into the heavy wine.

Whoever has no house now will not build one

Whoever is alone now will remain so for a long time,
will stay up, read, write long letters,
and wander the avenues, up and down,
restlessly, while the leaves are blowing.

Translated by Galway Kinnell and Hannah Liebmann,
“The Essential Rilke” (Ecco)

Original German


Herr: es ist Zeit.
Der Sommer war sehr gross.

Leg deinen Schatten auf die Sonnenuhren,
und auf den Fluren lass die Winde los.

Befiehl den letzten Fruchten voll zu sein;
gieb innen noch zwei sudlichere Tage,
drange sie zur Vollendung hin und jage
die letzte Susse in den schweren Wein.

Wer jetzt kein Haus hat, baut sich keines mehr.
Wer jetzt allein ist, wird es lange bleiben,
wird wachen, lesen, lange Briefe schreiben
und wird in den Alleen hin und her
unruhig wandern, wenn die Blatter treiben.

Rainer Maria Rilke
Paris, Sept. 21, 1902

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It took time to make these several lines

and leave them free of all that might have been.

What sacrifice this requires, what delight,

ascetic yet privileged, to leave it upright

like a Chinese box or a house of cards.

This could have been many things: the barren

field of elegy, a mass sung at Lourdes,

or some harmonious bed made of chords.

Instead, it celebrates its reticence.

Brett Foster
Fall Run Road, Garbage Eater, Rome


In Image: Artist – Brett Foster

At The Poetry Foundation: Brett Foster

In memoriam: Obituary for Brett Foster

Poems in The Christian Century 

Intercession: For my Daughter” by Brett Foster

Poetry Reading at Colorado Christian University – 2012

Brett Foster, Jane Beal,

& Dr. Jerry Root, C.S. Lewis Scholar

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“The rain in Spain stays mainly in the plain.”

Gabriel Pacal

(qtd. in “My Fair Lady”)


La lluvia en Sevilla es una maravilla!

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Oh río
de las cosas,
no se dirá
que sólo
los peces,
o las plantas de selva y de pradera,
que no sólo
lo que salta, sube, sobrevive, suspira.
No es verdad:
muchas cosas
me lo dijeron todo.
No sólo me tocaron
o las tocó mi mano,
sino que acompañaron
de tal modo
mi existencia
que conmigo existentes
que vivieron conmigo media vida
y morirán conmigo media muerte.

Pablo Neruda
Odas a las Cosas /
Odes to Common Things

(O irrevocable
of things,
no one will say
that I loved
the fish,
or the plants of the rainforest and the field,
that I only
that which leaps, rises, survives, sighs.
It’s not true:
many things
tell me it all.
Not only did they touch me,
or my hand touch them,
but they accompanied
my existence
in such a way
that they lived with me
and they were, for me, so alive
that they lived with me half my life
and they will die with me half my death.)

trans. Jane Beal

DSC02736 - Version 2


by Jane Beal

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Psalm 65

To the Director of Music. A Psalm of David. A Song. 

1 Praise is due to you, O God, in Zion,
    and to you shall vows be performed.
O you who hear prayer,
    to you shall all flesh come.
When iniquities prevail against me,
    you atone for our transgressions.
4 Blessed is the one you choose, and bring near,
    to dwell in your courts!
We shall be satisfied with the goodness of your house,
    the holiness of your temple!

By awesome deeds you answer us with righteousness,
    O God of our salvation,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
    and of the farthest seas;
the one who by his strength established the mountains,
    being girded with might;
who stills the roaring of the seas,
    the roaring of their waves,
    the tumult of the peoples,
so that those who dwell at the ends of the earth
     are in awe at your signs.
You make the going out of the morning
     and the evening to shout for joy.

You visit the earth and water it;
    you greatly enrich it;
the river of God is full of water;
    you provide their grain,
    for so you have prepared it.
10 You water its furrows abundantly,
    settling its ridges,
softening it with showers,
    and blessing its growth.
11 You crown the year with your bounty;
    your wagon tracks overflow with abundance.
12 The pastures of the wilderness overflow,
    the hills gird themselves with joy,
13 the meadows clothe themselves with flocks,
    the valleys deck themselves with grain,
    they shout and sing together for joy.



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something, heart in, struggling
to out get

eyes yours, were mine,
this see


bridge over

sailing, dream, fear, memory


neversomeday, whytry, singing
show you, show me

what i mean




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The clocks have all been set back.
We play with counting hours —
flipping the hourglass,
watching the salt sink
from heaven to earth.

All this time — I can’t
hold it in my hands,
even though my hands are open
and longing for

If you even whispered,
near my ear,
I would hear your words
echoing in my heart,
but why now, silence?

Time opens so slowly,
like a flower, but not
one caught on time-lapse film,
not so that we would notice
a bud become a bloom.

So much more than what we see,
so much more than what we hear:
one touch, a thousand years,
another touch, a whole day,
a third and a fourth, eternity.

My prayers are minutes.
My prayers are songs.
I wish like a woman standing
beside a well, watching
pennies disappear in the water.

First, my face is reflected there,
then yours. It is afternoon.
The bees are making honey.
The birds are singing in the trees.
Night will reveal the stars.

Jane Beal

The Milky Way over Herbert Lake, Banff, Alberta, near Lake Louise. Mount Temple is glacier-clad peak at left. A single exposure of 40 seconds at f/2.8 with 16-35mm lens and Canon 5D MkII at ISO 1600. No Moon, and taken in late twilight.

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Things take the time they take. Don’t
How many roads did Saint Augustine follow
before he became Saint Augustine?

Mary Oliver


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Dark brown is the river,

       Golden is the sand.

It flows along for ever,

       With trees on either hand.

Green leaves a-floating,

       Castles of the foam,

Boats of mine a-boating–

       Where will all come home?

On goes the river

       And out past the mill,

Away down the valley,

       Away down the hill.

Away down the river,

       A hundred miles or more,

Other little children

       Shall bring my boats ashore.

Robert Louis Stevenson

from A Child’s Garden of Verses


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“You do not realize now what I am doing,

but later, you will understand.”

~ Jesus


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Beautiful Things


“Death is but crossing the world, as friends do the seas; they live in one another still. For they must needs be present, that love and live in that which is omnipresent. In this divine glass, they see face to face; and their converse is free, as well as pure. This is the comfort of friends, that though they may be said to die, yet their friendship and society are, in the best sense, every present, because immortal.”

William Penn
More Fruits of Solitude

On Friendship
William Penn

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