As the Summer Dies

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Life starts anew as the summer dies,

And the moon hangs full over ripened fields.

Rain-damp leaves carpet the ground;

the air is heavy with their passing.

 

You and I walk this far-flung road,

And truths fall from us like leaves.

We tell our secrets before we realize what we’ve said,

And suddenly we stand in the blazing light of honesty.

 

If I could bend my words, pound them flat and solid,

burnish them until they shone mirror-bright,

You could gaze into them and see yourself as I see you:

Stronger than you think,

Wiser than you believe,

Lovelier than you hope.

You yourself are mirror-bright.

 

But like the first leaf falling–

summer’s small death–

I feel the sudden shift of atmosphere,

uncomfortably self-aware in the light of our candor.

Our easy, flowing honesty hitches.

I’ve already said too much.

 

So my words lose their glow,

grow dull and flat and safe,

restrained by the fear of looking foolish,

and you see yourself with your own eyes,

Not mine.

I catch my breath, hold my tongue,

and we walk into the autumn night.

Ex Nihilo

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There are days when I all I need

Is not to need

Sometimes my heart is a black hole

I take and take

Tell me, when’s it gonna be enough?

When I’m looking to be filled

by empty air

I’ll never be satisfied

So fill my heart with something real

Not some cheap imitation

Fill me so I can be poured out

So I can give for once

and look for nothing in return

You who created everything from nothing

Take this emptiness in me

and breathe

Make all things new

Even me

Vulnerability

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In the desire to be strong,

it is easy to become hard,

and vulnerability

often feels like frailty.

How humiliating it can be

to admit that we need–

That we aren’t able to keep going

alone–

That we are desperate to know

and be known.

Even now I hide behind this word:

“We”

when, if I’m being honest,

I mean “me.”

Samaritan

The well flows with water

but it’s empty for me

My parched lips touch the cup

And I drink long and deep

But it never fills me

Never satisfies

It’s not water that I need

But where is mercy liquified?

I keep drawing from the well

Hoping something new will rise

But it’s always just the same

And the longing never dies

Oh, come bend down close to me

Tell me everything I am

Lay bare my secrecy

So I can no longer pretend

That this water is enough

That my life is not so rough

That my heart is pretty tough

Tell me that you know

Every gross indecency

Every hidden part of me

Voice it plainly since I won’t

And set me free

Living Water, speak and say:

“Messiah – I am he.”

Speak Into Silence

Your pain rolls off you
Like the deep rumble of thunder
Across flat, wind-whipped fields.
As I sit across the table from you,
My own heart feels the reverberations.
And if I’ve ever longed for eloquence-
For my words to act as healing balm-
It is now.
But as I look in your eyes
And see the bleak despair,
The tinge of betrayal,
I am struck dumb, mute.
No words of life.
No comfort.
I wish I could speak what you need,
But it’s not my voice you need to hear.
And until He speaks
Gentle and low into your silence,
No other words will help.
So I sit and listen with you,
And together we can wait
Until we hear… something.

NPM: Siren Song– Denouement

I am a siren still

And I sing the only song I know

Tenuously suspended

in a liminal space

Part woman, part bird

Flighty, I abhor a cage

And my sharp eye

and flitting bird-heart

Fear its confinement

But perhaps I have shed

A few of these feathers

and become more wholly

a person, not a fable

I sing and hope

for one who knows the perils

and dares anyway

to approach my jagged coastline

To take my hand, taloned as it is

and bear my flaws

Lead me not to a cage,

but to a horizon

And hear me, truly

hear me

Because I sing the only song I know:

My own.

 

NPM: Endures

I cannot stop loving the stars

Though I have never

in all my life

seen them fill the sky

They have always been

partially hidden

by smog or clouds

or city lights

But I dream of how they look

if I only had the eyes to see them

and they are glorious

swirling through the black emptiness

a sonata of energy

galaxies spinning, expanding

colors so vivid

they can’t be real

And perhaps it is the fact

that I have not seen them–

not gotten the chance to

get accustomed to the wonder–

perhaps that is why

my love for them endures