Tag Archives: lost

Poetry Drips Like Poison


drips like poison
from his fingertips
and passion
seizes his mind
until there is no more hope.
is found in the most unlikely places
and freedom’s price
is a life well lived.
safety, anonymity and assurance,
good intentions
may rob your soul
of its open window
may close out the light
until your love wastes away
in a dark cellar.
The prisons of our minds
are no more dangerous
than the eyes with which we see.

And I wanted to love you.
But you took away my voice.



Tell me there’s more than this,
that there’s hope for me.

I’ve been poured in concrete,
no matter how I struggle
I’m still in the same place
longing for you
waiting to see your face again
but the distance is dissolving my memory of you,
and I find myself trapped in this endless moment
clinging to wisps of smoke from your fire
longing for the passion which once filled me

I’m holding onto trinkets
symbols which are cheapened without your presence
and I feel cheap
hoping like this—
waiting for you,
knowing I’m powerless to
conjure up your love
like a witch doctor who has found out the utter
uselessness of my spells,
yet still reciting them
longing for the magic to

Coming Home


they asked me how I got so far from you,
how long I ran on this journey away from home
but looking back I never ran,
No, that is not how I got here
on some angry track with hair blowing in the wind
It started with a glance over my shoulder,
a toss of my head as I turned to survey the other possibilities
It started with a glance and a small backwards step
This journey took years, one small sidling step at a time
Until I stopped and found I’d traveled through countries
over oceans and up mountains
it was never a long journey running away
I never found the path difficult to walk
So why is it that turning back toward home has proven so daunting
Why are these forward steps
so  much harder than the backward ones
Feet knee-deep in sand, drenched in confusion
Pulling out each foot, planting it in a new direction
Returning toward home

Kiss of Inspiration


After a storm,
the wide plain where I used to live
is an ocean of snow.

And I imagine
that you are
somewhere out there
among the peaks and valleys of the waves
treading water
calling to me
reminding me how you used to
me with your art.

And I long to
come to you,
lean close and lend you my
of inspiration

But I awake
to find I’m standing in a
field of snow
raw from the cold
and you
are not there to take
my kiss.

Poetry Friday: Wandering Gypsy


I wrote this poem during a fantastic vacation to the Smoky Mountains.  I loved how just miles from the touristy Gatlinburg you could lose yourself in the solitude of the mountains.  Sometimes you just need to get away from all the noise.

Wandering Gypsy

i am the only human
in this corner of the planet
miles away from
flashing brake lights
smoking exhaust pipes
blinking LCD screens
rotating billboards
“stop and see us”
“thirty dollars for a great show”
“dinner included for an extra fifteen”

but I have pushed my little maroon PT Cruiser rental to its limits,
demanding it deliver me to the mountains
ordering it up steep inclines and sharp turns
before abandoning it like a used lover
on the side of the road
to trek out on my own
i rush across wooden bridges,
suspended by screws and chains
and hurriedly leap over giant smooth stones—
sleeping dinosaurs in this tumbling foam of flowing water
perched on a large egg of a rock
i am cradled by its speckled curves
if i can pry myself from the sweet coolness
and the siren song of the waterfalls
i could hurry back over these abandoned behemoths
and climb the slopes to the chimney tops
of a forgotten hideaway
i could forge for berries
and bathe in the river
and build a shelter from fallen branches
and i could hideaway here
run away from all the screaming
lights and pipes and screens and billboards
live like a wandering gypsy of the chimney tops
and forget all the day-to-day bustle i left behind

A poem for lost fathers: Raising My Voice


Today the world is short one more amazing father, husband, friend, and follower of Christ.  Brett Cannon was an incredible man and it’s so tragic to see his life ended too soon.  Tonight my prayers go out to his wife and children.  They carry a heavy weight.  This poem was originally written for another amazing father, husband, friend, and disciple–Raja Nweiser; whose story reminded me so much of losing my own father.  Today this poem is dedicated to Brett’s family, and to all of those who are grieving a father ripped away to soon.  I’m raising my voice for you.

(Note: baba is the Arabic word for daddy.)

Raising My Voice

I’ve been here before –
nearly twenty years ago
I stood beside the wooden box which held a man
who had only seen forty-one winter chills
only forty-one spring thaws
only known a few years in his children’s lives
I stood looking down at his strangely tinted face,
held his cold fingers with my warm ones
my mind unable to comprehend what this meant
we stood in a line—from toddler to eleven year old
and said goodbye to our “baba.”

I’ve been here before –
but with someone else
this time the movie plays through my mind,
a continuous loop
of you laughing and smiling
joking as we climbed to Herod’s palace
telling me of your beautiful girls as we drove through the desert
narrating stories as we wandered through the siiq to Petra’s great Treasury
encouraging me  as we hiked up to the Monastary—
(never letting me give up despite all my protests
without you I would never have known the view from that mountain’s peak)
caring for every detail when I fell like a clumsy child
and each memory that washes over me brings a fresh wave of sorrow.

I’ve been here before –
but this time I see things with my grown-up eyes
I see the world without you, and it seems empty somehow
where once stood a loving shepherd, now stands a grieving flock
where once was a respected mentor, now sit confused students
where once was the love of a father and husband, now is the heartbreak of a wife and her children
and my grown-up eyes weep
for the dreams you’ll never fulfill
the potential that lies unreached
the friend that I have lost
the wife whose love was torn away
the children whose baba will never again tuck them in at night

I’ve been here before –
and so I offer up my prayers
For all those who have lost their pastor, mentor, colleague, friend, loved one
For the days when you feel overwhelmed with sorrow
For the nights when sleep is chased away by memories
For the moments when grief chokes back your breath
I stand beside you
and I raise my voice
to the One whose comfort will carry us through

Beautiful Silver Scaled Fish


Beautiful, silver scaled fish
For a brief moment I held you, trembling,
On the end of my hook

Your dark, inky eyes pierced into me
And I could tell
You contemplated your future in my hands
I could see
(in a blink of an eye)
A part of you was willing to give yourself to me

Your shaking body quieted
I breathed inspiration into your gills
You stared at me
On the precipice of surrender

Then with a graceful flick of your fin
You leapt off the hook
Suspended in mid-air as you hesitated
Between leaping into my cupped hands
And the foaming aqua pool
And then you flung yourself away from me

The ocean whispered in my ear that night
It sang to me of your regret
And I smiled, knowing your beautiful inconstancy

Poetry Friday: A Father’s Story


I wrote a poem today, but it’s not quite ready to see the light.  So here’s an older one–revised and revamped just for you:

I told a story
of a father’s love
generous, forgiving, never-ending
who pursued his lost child
through famine and loss
through pain and denial
a love that went searching
for the child who didn’t want to be found.

I looked around me
at the sea of baffled faces
“Oh, storyteller you have failed us!”
they cry.

“We are a generation of children
with lost fathers
selfish, absent, forgetful
who have ignored their children
through pleas and tears
through anger and heartbreak
We are a generation
whose absent fathers don’t want to be found.”