Between the Lines

CWRUThe lines hold space, the space catches breath, and where the lines bend in disciplined tension, the curves then sigh into release. How did you know, Creative Spirit, that I have been so intent on the lines and definitions and calculations that I have neglected to see the spaces? How did you so perfectly comfort my spirit through architecture, salve my soul with the silent wonder of art, break open delight like sun through a window? You are indeed Muse and Mystery, a Tangible Wonder, my Daily Surprise. I follow the line, then let it go. I caress the curve, then move on. You have blessed me more than I imagined when I woke this morning. My heart is full.

Lent 35

The floor creaks and keeps me company, like friends lingering together long after the last drink, determined to tell all the tales and sing all the songs before calling it a night. Of course, the floorboards only chirp & groan in the early morning and at the end of the day, when they can be certain of no interruptions. If I take a step, they scold and silence me. Even the moon is hushed to listen, or maybe she is quietly jealous of the nearby star that is outshining her tonight — which is ridiculous, if only she would stop to realize it, for that pinpoint of light is like a beauty mark on the glow she casts over the rooftops and sidewalks. How did we become so competitive over the spotlight? … Does it matter? If the moon cannot hide her jealousy, how can we? Still I try to soothe her forlorn expression by turning out the indoor lights until hers is the only one to be seen. And while the moon waxes with sorrow, the hardwood resumes its soliloquy on age and time and grace under pressure; the stories soothe my spirit like perfume over the feet of one who was weary. It is time for me to sit at his feet again, to laugh long and listen longer like friends who are determined not to get up from the table until everything has been said, until they are ready to cede their turn to the moonlight and the floorboards and the knowledge that nighttime always fades into morning.

on John 12:1-3


With every flight and every new city,
I am mercifully one step farther away from you
in miles, in memories, in fresh molecules of air
on my skin to erase any trace of your breath.

[Where can I go from your spirit?
How far can I flee from your presence?]

Cleveland. Orlando. Chicago.
United. Delta. American.
And out of the skies: highways and byways
from city to suburb to country. Keep going.

[If I fly as far as the sunset,
if I hide beneath the ocean,
even there you find me.]

Let me leave you. Find a new heart to haunt.
You have no use for my rising or my sleeping,
and I have no use for your secrets, no matter how holy;
they elude but ensnare me. You are not playing fair.

[You surround my thoughts, my living, my being.
I am helpless as your hand & your eye behold me.]

Chase someone else with your ridiculous love;
find a new quest to win, a new enemy to test
but depart from me if you care at all…
…and I will depart
and depart and
depart until
I am all

on Psalm 139


Without You

There must be you.
There has to be you.
Without you,
how will I sleep at night?
How will I rest
if not in the knowledge
that you are there — beside, behind, before,
long ago and forever?
Without you,
how will I laugh in the storm?
Only the impossibility of you
makes the impossibility of mirth
possible in this chaos.
Without you,
how will the wilderness bloom?
How will I tell stories
of life, how will I
paint pictures of flowers
sing songs of rocks yielding water
without you?
There must be you.
There must be
a joy of the galaxies
a peace within the oceans
a love of the tree for the soil
a hope beyond the sunset
a testimony of generations
else how will I smile
how will I greet
my sister
how will I walk
how will I wonder
how will I be
without you?
There must be you.

on Luke 1:43