christian poetry

A Vision of Holiness

a giant white tile glided in night brightened by violet lightning

TBB - Holiness Whole

i tried to keep it white with all my might
but black decrepit sin crept back in
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 1

i didnt think it would sink too soon so i left well enough alone
i am a sinful creature and a complicated beast
and it spread
and it spread
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 2

not wanting it to spread too far
i compartmentalized my sin to stay within that space
at least there and at least blocked off
it wouldn’t contaminate the rest of my life
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 3

Black decrepit sin crept back in again
it had to win
(then again i didn’t defend)
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 4

old habits die hard if they die at all
and i did what i do best
compartmentalize my sin
so that it doesn’t spread
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 5

after a while the vile bile beguiled me to let it go wild
and as long as i kept my guard up
i let it do what it wanted to
consume
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 6

and consume it did like an arachnid
stretching its legs to lay her eggs
because sin begets sin begets
sin begets death
and i let sin in again
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 7

eventually i came to be comfortable and complacent
with sin doing sin and me doing me
and me doing nothing about it
this is nothing new

TBB - Holiness Sin 8
but then i stepped back
and looked at the cracks
not from out back
but from my own lack
of integrity
it wasn’t pretty
and it was then when i realized
that i knew nothing

TBB - Holiness Sin 9

even my white was turning to gray
even my light was fading away
even my might was wanting to sway
and i knew nothing
until i remembered what HE said
it made me so red
that night in my bed
i can’t get it out of my head
LET THE DEAD BURY THEIR DEAD
even you he whispered
don’t resurrect your dead self
that’s not your life anymore

TBB - Holiness Whole
be WHOLE as I AM WHOLE
be HOLY as I AM HOLY

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Stormy Water (a poem)

God why did you make loving you hurt so much
why are things most beautiful when they’re gone
to float peacefully over the black waves of anxiety
and still too overdrawn by their gravity to breathe

orange sunset sinking into the gray horizon
hazily miraculously craning backwards
turning the mirage world upside down
because I spine stiff am upside down

I try letting you walk down the stairs
from the top of my head into my heart
and instill your spirit to be still my soul
I’m still afraid of what you’ll find down there

a treasure chest of solitude that has yet to be cracked
open even though I accepted the key several years ago
I can feel you tinkering with the lock and the hinges now
and I’m sorry that I keep putting up such a restless fight

but please don’t throw me out to the fishes just yet
where there’s weeping and pulling of yellow teeth
hold me close to the boat so I don’t drift away
into the atmosphere of mist connections

work on me God and work through me
love on me God and love through me
that I may find peace and rest
in this weary weary world

The Devil At Work (a poem)

Most people think that the devil at work
is a creature with horns, a red cape, and a fork
that sneaks up behind us and tells us to sin
whenever we’re tempted to stumble again.

That could be the case if the devil were God
and was at one time everywhere and abroad
and actually used all the power we give him
instead of the fear in which he has been livin’.

But all our mistakes and the folly we live in
result from the chances we think we’ve been given
and choices we make when we try to be level;
the devil just doesn’t have time to be “devil.”

The devil at work isn’t worth the explorin’ –
our pride and our lust will do all the work for him.

This photo was taken by Michael Hull and is available through Unsplash.com.

Driving in the Moonlight (a poem)

my generation drives in the moonlight
of faith filtered by fallacious fear
of hope held down by hollowed histrionics
of love lost in the limbo of legality

illumination without demonstration
memorization without externalization
catechism without asceticism
reading a heap without feeding the sheep
knowing a need without sowing the seed
faith without works – and it hurts

we cry because nothing grows in the moonlight
we have just enough sight to see the path
and just enough height to hit the gas
but we can’t commit to letting God drive

we have to check our headlights and our tail lights
our engine light between every stop light
to provide new cars for our future security
never minding how hot the radiator runs
never minding the thought that rarely ever comes
works without faith – and it isn’t safe

my generation drives in the moonlight
we think we have to go somewhere nice
and we think we have to do something good
but we don’t want to wait for the Son.

This is a photograph of a wheat field taken by Cole Patrick.

Let Them Grow Together (a poem)

A man said that weeds were showing on the plain
ingrained with the seeds and growing with the grain.
The Creator, up on high, is throwing down the rain,
and we, later, low with sigh, are hoeing in a chain
these weeds of malfunction. We’re sowing with a strain
of deeds of destruction while mowing with the pain.
“Don’t uproot them now, as you’re knowing in your brain,
but let them grow together – as if flowing – as if twain –
and when the harvest comes, burn the chaff, save the grain.”


A poetic reiteration of the Jesus’s Parable of the Weeds as found in Matthew 13:24-30.

This is an image of a hollow tree.

More or Less (a poem)

Is anybody right anymore?
Can anybody say the right thing anymore?
Can anybody do the right thing anymore?
Can anybody stand up for the right thing anymore?

More or less.

Will anybody fight anymore?
Can anybody keep the fight up anymore?
Can anybody let the fight down anymore?
Can anybody stand up and fight back anymore?

More or less.

Is anybody light anymore?
Can anybody leave the light on anymore?
Can anybody turn the light out anymore?
Can anybody let their own light shine anymore?

Moral-less.

This is an image of a modern soldier's helmet.

The Helmet of Salvation

For the helmet of salvation that we don

and the trouble that we have to keep it on,

it’s no wonder that we falter

with the mind of a defaulter

when the hope to rest in Paradise is gone.

This is an image from the film CONSTANTINE that features Constantine walking through hell.

When The World Will End

When the grass is brown and hot and dry
and when the vapor hazes in the air
and when the leaves crunch under feet
because the sun refuses to lay off the heat

When the veneration of childhood
becomes the exaltation of impulse
and when the discipline of impulse
becomes the repression of freedom

When lovers can call each other such
and not even offer each other much
because where love was once a sacrificial action
is now nothing more than a sexual satisfaction

When one would rather lie and save from getting hurt
than tell the truth for what it’s wholly worth
and suspicion makes up in a relationship
for what a surplus of patience used to give

When the means by which one accomplishes
become the end for which one wryly wishes
and when the happiness that once was purely fought for
becomes the complacency that one was surely bought for

When ethics are as empty as whitewash tombs
with no morality to guide them
and no absolutism to back them up:
this is when the world will end.


 

This is an image of King Solomon and three of his concubines.

Modern Solomon

A modern Solomon is what I may
become, my harem on the internet;
my concubines are digitally met
where I can click and double-click away;
I like that I remember every sway
and make my browsing history forget;
I like that I can take what I can get
without commitment getting in my way.

But this is only worship of the self,
and such idolatry is blasphemous;
whene’er I want my fantasies explored,
I turn my back on God to please myself;
how sad that I can feel so scandalous
and think I’m still within my loving Lord.