Wings

It has been quiet on this blog… but today I publish the poem I wrote for the FaithWriters’ Challenge in October—the topic was “Zest.” Since then I have concentrated on writing in my mother tongue, Dutch. I am grateful to have been accepted as a member of a Dutch writers group, LetterSpinsels, where I will have every opportunity to further develop my writing skills. But I still love to write in English and who knows, maybe one day, I will write another book in this beautiful language.

If you are curious about my Dutch writings, see Kleurrijke Koorden (Colorful Threads).


Wings

Wings

While I stare into the dreary dawn of yet another day,
I am struggling for the strength and the steadiness to pray;
the constant whipping of a storm has left my spirit frayed.
God, please show
me how to grow.

All is quiet but a flitter: wings against the glass.
A fritillary at the window, frantic, tries to pass
the unseen obstacle to life. At the impasse,
it sits inert.
Maybe it’s hurt.

Despite myself, I scramble up to save the little thing.
Carefully, I cup my hands around its tender wings.
Against my palm, it tickles as it grasps and tightly clings.
Fatigue aside,
I stride outside.

My hands unfold. It sits so still, hiding its colored dress,
as if waiting for a sign. A breath of wind caresses…
It climbs the air; its rising, circling flight expresses
my delight;
a joyful sight.

A twisting dive, a swoop of wings, a swallow’s beak snaps shut
around the tiny butterfly. The cruelty converts
the blissful fluttering into a cramping knot of hurt.
With drooping head,
I trudge to bed.

How can I live abundantly when life resembles Sheol,
where I’m straggling through the dark—no map, no route, no goal—
and predators are on the prowl to feast upon my soul?
I shroud my face
and my disgrace.

Don’t hide and keep your heart from me, by circumstances bound.
Hide in the shadow of My wings, where steadfast love abounds.
Profounder joy and brighter light are nowhere to be found.
Come to Me
and be free.

Hues of pastel pink and blue now paint the new day’s sky.
I get up and spread my arms—I am God’s butterfly—
In His protection and His force, with eagle’s wings I’ll fly.
No time to waste—
there’s life to taste.

***

Bible references: Psalm 36:7-9, Isaiah 40:31.

photo credit: Silver-washed Fritillary via photopin (license)

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Shards of Life

Broken Vase
About three weeks ago, I did an attempt to write a serious poem. It was the first time in my life (okay, since adolescence…). After I submitted it to the FaithWriters Weekly Writing Challenge, I discovered that God used it to speak into my own life. I had indeed built some walls that had dark corners with ugly growths. Covered by God’s grace, I put everything in the light. Restoration is in process. God is so good.

Here’s the poem, and I pray it will bless you.


 

The Broken Vase

 

A heavy weight has crushed my brittle heart

A vase that broke into a million pieces,

Its purpose lost. My emptiness increases.

I’m floored, oh God, all hope from me departs.

 

Betrayal, loss, affliction, and despair

Piled up until too bulky to be carried.

Under the crashed-down rubble now lies buried

My soul. Into the face of death I stare.

 

You say you’re near and you’ll revive my spirit.

So God, pick up this shattered heart of mine

My fallen, fractured selfand please align

Reality with what’s my rightful merit.

 

Your quiet’s hard to stand; my strength is streaming

Into the soil beneath my suff’ring soul.

A vortex drags me down, out of control.

Anxiety attacks, depression’s scheming.

 

Still waiting here for You, my God. Restore me.

Accomplish what you promised. I believe

That you exist, so why don’t You relieve

My anguish? Why not chase the gloom that’s o’er me?

 

Dear child of Mine, I’ve heard your ev’ry prayer,

Your cries and wails resounding in My heart.

I know the pain that’s tearing you apart.

You yearn, yet you don’t yield all to My care.

 

When you hold back, I cannot make you whole.

If you build walls, defensive with dead angles

Where anger broods and bitter roots entangle,

To shield your sin, I cannot mend your soul.

 

You do believe, but why don’t you surrender?

Why don’t you trust My mercy, love and grace?

Hand over all the fragments of your vase;

I’ll glue—renew—and pour it full of splendor.

 

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit (Psalm 34:18).

 


 

photo credit: Day 207: Shattered Chivas via photopin (license)