Wednesday, May 30, 2012

A Silent Goodnight

An old poem, pretty rough in spots, that's been rattling around in the "drafts" wasteland here for quite a while.  Thinking, in part, about my sister Lisa, whose absence from our lives affects us in ways we can never know or understand, as well as my grandma, who has been gone from us for over 7 years now. What Christians refer to as the Holy Spirit is someone else I may have been thinking about while writing this a few years ago, weaving her way in and out of a few of these lines...

I spoke with a child about my first fright
She said in a whisper, “God be with you, goodnight”
I asked why the quiet in tormented times?
He said hush now, dear child,
but don’t close your eyes.
The wind all around you
It’s calling your name
I shrink from the knowledge of Love’s scorching flame
It burns and it melts as it torches your soul
The unseen around you, the earth and the stone.

You one day will learn what heaven awaits
Is it hell or cool water,
or both just the same?
I wish you could tell me
from your bed down below.
Please whisper to me, if you can,
What do I do? And how can I know?
Have I done all I could?
Or is it His only to know?
Will They one day save me
from the fires below?
Are his arms burning embers?
Or would you not know?

I spoke with an elder
Who begged me to leave
She roared with the thunder
“Who showers these trees?
Were you there when creation burst forth from a Word?
And who gave you the power to speak it so plain?”
Bewildered I heard,
Fear and Love, just the same?
A child would know
But I must beware
I speak it too freely
As if no one is there…

She walks through the garden in the cool of the day
She looks in my eyes, she whispers my name.
At night is a silence, no louder by day.
Who Are You? I ask
Until nothing remains
I seek out the light until blinded and numb
I turn now, my back, away from the Sun
Now I can see, all around clear and plain
But I’m walking away
From the Silence I leave
Louder, my terror
Do I still believe?
Not as that child
who knows what I need
Soon, as that woman, in deepest dirt, covered leaves
She knows all there is
Or nothing at all
I fear (God be with you)
I fear where you are

Candlelight flickers
The ashes below
The water I drink
This tremble I hold
The peace that eludes me
dead spirit, let go
I’ll be caught, or I’ll tumble
To darkness below

Grace, Love, and Mercy
A light for my path
Cold comfort for you
who burn in Love’s wrath.
Christ killed long ago
Don’t ask, they don’t tell
Love starts to feel like a searching death knell

The tears that I cry fall on deaf earth and stone
She’s not coming back, and I cannot go
I wish I could hear you
Are you hear with me?
He speaks not a whisper
Can’t touch, sense, or see
All around me there is…just everything
And this should not be.
With a quiet sullen terror, peace and serenity
I wait for the darkness to shatter the light
I wait for an answer, direction, or sight
I wait just for nothing
You whisper, Goodnight…

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