Psalm for Times of Peace

You are quiet
Your voice I hear not
And in silence I suffer
Longing to hear you once again

O why do you keep your lips pressed closed
When I am drowning in the quiet
And a word from you would be
Breath in my lungs to sustain me?

It is not so much your reticence that
Has doomed me to suffer this disquieting quiet
But my own foolishness
For when you have spoken I have not been keen to listen
Release me from this hostile peace
And I will open my ears to hear

~~

a free verse sonnet for dVerse

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One Small Cog

“I’m merely a cog, one insignificant gear,” said Charles to his friend Robert at a dimly lit table in the corner of a small cafe. His voice, not much more than a whisper, was not meant to travel beyond the booth in which the two men sat, but travel it did. Not far, but just far enough to be heard by an older man at a booth nearby.

The older man rose slowly from his seat, a slight hunch to his shoulders betraying his age to any who might care to look. His hands and face wore the lines of years as well, but his eyes…if you only looked at his eyes you would think that you gazed upon a much younger man.

He took the five steps that it took to arrive at the table of the two younger men, and he pulled a card out of the pocket of his immaculate three-piece suit, presented it to Charles, and said, “If you would care to come to the address on the card, I have something to show you that you may find interesting.” Without another word, he walked to the front, placed some crisp clean bills on the counter, and walked out of the cafe.

The two young men exchanged a glance, and shrugged off the unusual experience before continuing the rest of their meal in silence, but the thought of the older man did not quite leave them alone.

A few pages of the calendar turned, though, before the two men broached the subject of the old man again. “Do you remember that old man?” asked Robert one day, and Charles only replied by putting his hand in his pocket, and pulling out a card. Only after placing the card carefully on the table did he speak, “I can’t stop thinking about him. What do you think he wanted to show us?”

“Should we go find out?” asked Robert, and with little more discussion, the two men found themselves on a journey they had never quite intended to take.

~~

At the end of their drive, they found themselves at a small and unremarkable building. A door, a small window,and little else. “What if he doesn’t remember us?” asked Charles as he lifted his hand to knock.

After knocking, they waited long enough that they were certain that no one would answer, and were just beginning to turn to walk back to their car when they heard the sound of the lock being turned.

The older man slowly opened the door, looked at his guests and smiled. “I’ve been expecting you, but I didn’t realize my humble shop would be quite so hard to find. Please, come in!”

Robert and Charles noticed immediately the sound of ticking. As they followed the old man, they saw the source of the sound: clocks of all sizes, too numerous to count, lined all of the walls, and when they arrived at the back room, they saw a table covered in gears, springs, pendulums, each laid out in a precise order. At the end of the bench was a clock that was nearly assembled, but had not yet been placed in its housing. “Come! Look!” The two men went and were amazed at the fine intricacies of the work in progress. Some gears were large, others were tiny.

The old man then said, “I once heard one of you say that you were ‘merely a cog, an insignificant gear’. Can you tell me, in this clock, which gear is the least significant?”

The two men stared intently at the already ticking time piece. After a lengthy inspection, they finally called the older man and pointed to the smallest gear that they could locate.

The old man then put on a pair of magnifying glasses, pulled a pair of tweezers from a drawer, and pulled the tiny gear from the workings. Immediately, the clock stopped.

“You can see that that gear was more significant than it first appeared. Would you like to try a different one?”

Charles guessed that any gear removed would have the same result, regardless of the gear’s size.

“Correct!” replied the clock maker (for that is what the old man was). “We are all, indeed, ‘cogs’ or’gears’, but my friends, never make the mistake of thinking that any gear is insignificant.”

On my head…your helmet

My mind is prone to wander
my thoughts too often stray
to things I should not think upon
to thoughts that lead away

from thinking about pure things,
about the good and true
the praiseworthy, the excellent,
the thoughts that lead to you

Oh Lord I pray that on my head
your helmet you would place
the one that guards my wayward mind
with peace, with love, with grace

so that the things I do each day
will help me truly know
the depth and width of your great love
that my own love may grow

~~

Based on Philippians 4:8 and Ephesians 6:17

Thief

I wonder if you’d open up your door
if you already knew it was a ploy:
that he who knocks loves very little more
than doing things to break and to destroy?

for surely while your door is open wide
his henchmen use the moments that you stand
bewildered by the door to come inside
a window or the back door as they’d planned

or would you go and check your locks to see
that all your doors and windows are secure
and you would do all that you can to be
as safe as you can be, I’m pretty sure!

The Devil knocks to tempt each one to sin
why do we open up to let him in?

~~

Based loosely on John 10:10

Beacon

oh how
I long to shine
like a beacon in the dark
guiding the weary traveler
To safety and rsest

oh how
I long to shine
like a beacon in the dark
but too often I find
that I merely flicker
and burn out

~~

For dVerse. My muse has been flickering recently, but shone brightly enough today to write a Quadrille (poem of 44 words) including the prompt word “flicker”

Communion

I cannot fathom the idea of sinlessness –
my life is permeated with sin
Thoughts go astray that I do not rein in
I take actions that I shouldn’t
(and don’t take actions that I should)

Even the good that I do is
too often sullied by a
desire for praise
or a sense of self-righteousness

I am like a land
blanketed in thick smog
for the last thousand years
where no eye has seen
the blue of the sky
nor can they imagine it

so how can I fathom
that the one who was sinless
would wear as a cloak
all my filth
so that I
can truly be clean?

my heart cannot hold
the amount of thanksgiving
that is owed to my Saviour
for his gift
his unimaginable gift
his indescribable gift
his unfathomable sacrifice

for what kind of sense does it make
for the whole to be shattered
to mend the fragmented?
and yet somehow
that’s exactly what happened!

Take the Plunge

It’s midnight and the water’s deep
so take the plunge
count to three and hold your breath
and take the plunge
don’t worry about the waterfall
just take the plunge
watch your problems drain away
when you take the plunge

~~

the first two lines of this came to me at about 4am last night when I got up and discovered that the toilet required plunging…so if you change “take” to “use” and “plunge” to “plunger” in all the even numbered lines, the poem becomes more literal 🙂 Of course, it sounds a whole lot more pleasant if you read the poem the way it is written and ignore the clogged toilet bit (by the way, it was a minor clog…no waterfalls were involved…at least not this time.