2.17.2005

some news and a poem

quite a bit has changed since december 10, 2004, not the least of which is this fact: i no longer have to go to the library to access the internet. other events of note:

christmas: i got some cool stuff, you got some cool stuff, let's just get past it: we all got some cool stuff. and, on church stages all over the world, tiny plastic jesus-dolls were born. ahh, the miracle of the incarnation. (pause for reflection)

on a more somber note: my grandfather-in-law, frank thompson, passed away december 23. according to those who knew him best, he was ready to go, but those same sources were not. he deeply loved all of God's children, and he will be missed. he made me laugh.

january 17-24: i was in the hospital. crohn's disease can be a real bitch. (here's some general
information for the unaware.) in short: the week was not a fun one, but i have grown tremendously since.

enough of news. i will, i hope, begin updating this with a bit more consistency, which means there will be time for more news later.

now, here's a bit of poetry, for those of us with a softer side:

The street-cleaners have come
(a psalm of the conflicted)



The street-cleaners have come
again and again to find us in our home
safe and warm, if not dollars nearer
winter’s stinking breath and closing jaw, and death (Selah)

Soaking, I walked, in early summer,
blocks to that supermarket job I hated
while the lazy man just inside me waited,
his breath, stinking too, and baited (Selah)

February’s weeks you spent in that hotel
still drawing from your well of I-don’t-know-what
and telling me we’d be ok living,
living on what we’d lived the year before (Selah)

February’s weeks I spent in that hotel
still drawing from my well of selfishness,
my mind to TNN a faithful whore, and hell?
became the realization of my conflict:

You are not me; that simply will not do.
Or so I’ve thought a thousand times, and dreaming,
as you counted out our days in dimes,
of better things than all my weakness brings. (Selah)

Yet, I do not know what better things there are
than late-night games–canasta, one-on-one–
but we may find them if my words are truth:
resolution is the bedspring of the life Adam bestowed,
its sheets and pillows are our age and youth. (Selah)

As such, I do not wish to bow, or worse, to master you;
instead, I wish to synchronize your steps and mine,
to match you breath for death, and heart for mind.

The levity of an afterthought

Conflict brought all things, and brings still more
together, but alone? it simply will not do
to keep these words inside my head, and
too conflicted, show them not to you.

*end*

a closing thought: conflict is everywhere, with everyone. before we begin to say, "but God is not conflicted!" we must note that our own system of beliefs is fraught with the "perils" of paradox (kenneth burke has much to say about this). "perils," in quotation marks, because we are yet slow to realize that paradox is merely another kind of resolution: it is a marriage of perspectives in which two singular identities are faithfully preserved, just as the sum of the partnership becomes greater than that of its parts.

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