Sometimes I’m not sure why I do the things I do – or why God permits me to do them.
I don’t know if I’m being obedient and allowing myself to be led by Him. Or if the corrupt desires of my ego have taken over and led me from His path.
Strange that it should be so hard to tell. One might think that after 5-6 decades in the Christian faith I might have a better clue.
But I do not. At least not all of the time.
So I humbly offer to you today an example of such unknowing – a poem written for no particular reason.
The time spent writing could certainly have been used in more productive ways. It is far from a great masterpiece of a poem. Why did I write it?
Am I to learn something of my soul’s struggle as I work through the endless word and sound combinations?
Or did God simply want me seated at my computer last night so that a hot and weary stranger could see me with my door open and ask for a glass of water?
Perhaps I will never know.
But here is the poem…
if her soul
holds not tight
when all seems
calm and well.
seized and stolen –
fear the darkest night!
played and won,
forever to excite.
dismissing then –
life’s pure meaning
lost from sight.
known to rescue,
show us your great might.
else doomed be all
the free and mortal –
in heaven’s hope
the final fight.
hearts forlorn –
in darkness is the bright.
night be conquered,
come and taste –
consume His joy!
holy His great light.
(This poem includes a little puzzle of sorts. Did you notice? Strange the things I do…Not a total waste…at least a thirsty pilgrim received a glass of water.)
Who knows where poems come from? But they are important to write, if words in a form work better in releasing, or capturing, heightened moments than simple conversation does. Besides, it’s no fun to talk to yourself, but writing somehow adds a listener, even if only imagined.
I didn’t get the puzzle, but I myself was puuzzled by “gay be” and “sate on.” The rest was satisfying to read. Or rather, listen to. (When I read poems I usually hear them too)
Thanks, Al. In your puzzlement lies a hint to the puzzle.
***HINT (don’t read if you still want to try to figure it out):
Listen to the sounds of the beginning words of each stanza as follows, reading them aloud if needed:
first three words (1st stanza);
first two – bit loosely (2nd stanza);
first three – a bit loosely (3rd stanza);
first two (4th stanza).
I’ve never been good at puzzles. But, aha! I just got it. Clever you!
That’s it, Al! That’s the source of my ambivalence. I am afraid I spent too much time trying to be clever…
May I never aspire to cleverness, only the service of God. May He have mercy on me.
Thanks for helping me see that.
Ironically, but appropriately, shortly after posting the above comment, I read the following words in C. S. Lewis’ “The Great Divorce”:
“Every poet and musician and artist, but for Grace, is drawn away from love of the thing he tells, to love of the telling till, down in Deep Hell, they cannot be interested in God at all but only in what they say about Him.”
A chilling but excellent reminder of the need to always pray for and be open to Grace.