Lent 28 (Seven Loaves)

I have seven
but you ask me
for twelve and I can’t imagine
how we can see the same
loaves of bread but
tally them
so differently.
“This is seven,” I say,
and you smile, “This is twelve.”
“Seven isn’t enough,”
I protest, “I need eight just to get by myself;
how can you ask me for twelve?”
But again you say, “Twelve.”
I want to retort, “There’s no compromising
in math,” but I’m learning to
keep my mouth shut
when you suggest
what seems impossible.
“I can’t see it,” I confess, “but
make it so if twelve
are needed.”

Lent 27 (Sinking)

Scoop,
bail!
Scoop, bail!
Don’t let the storm know
that I’m afraid and
flooding with anxiety.
Don’t let on,
don’t even tell
Jesus —
let him sleep,
I can do this.
Scoop,
bail!
Endless.
It’s too much, too much.
Jesus, save me!
but don’t
look at the mess I’m in,
it’s too embarrassing
and already I’ve troubled you
more than you needed.
Just keep me from drowning, I beg,
and I will take care of the rest;
I’ll patch up the boat,
row the rest of the way
to shore, as long as I’m not
under water. Just give me that
one breath I need
then
go back to sleep, Jesus,
don’t mind me.
I’ll be alright.

Lent 26 (Call the Names)

In thanksgiving for ancestors and kin, for mothers and sisters across generations, for those who help to birth and those who accompany the walk and those who tell the tales, I call the names:

Grace
Susan
Mildred
Lydia
Lucy
Jacqueline
Eleanor
Tamar
Diane
Cheni
Ruth
Rahab
Marilyn
Sondra
Sarah
Lisa
Rubi
Nancy
Naomi
Bathsheba
Imani
Elsie
Mary
Lois

on Matthew 1:1-16

Lent 25 (Nursery Rhymes)

All the pretty little horses:
holy to the LORD!

The dapples and grays, the pintos and bays:
holy to the LORD!

The cat and the fiddle, the cow and the moon:
holy to the LORD!

The dog full of laughter, the dish and the spoon:
holy to the LORD!

Also the black sheep with all its wool:
holy to the LORD!

The boy who is empty, the home that is full:
holy to the LORD!

From the green & yellow basket
to a bicycle built for two:
holy to the LORD!

From the mouse on the clock
to the lavenders blue:
holy to the LORD!

on Zechariah 14:20

Lent 24 (Idolatry)

Out of glass
I carved a mirror
and there
I swore allegiance
to all that I could
determine
within and through
my own flesh & spirit.

Out of wood
I constructed
a shelter and I
anointed its doorway
with the oil of my sweat
vowing
to protect me and mine
against all odds
despite all costs.

Out of stones
I built my walls
layer upon layer
so that I would be
impenetrable
and unshakable
no matter who knocked
no matter who cared
no matter who bothered
to find me.

Still I confess:
the mirror cannot speak
though I often listen
for her voice;
the wood cannot wrap me
in warm embrace though
I tend it faithfully;
the stones cannot
tell good stories but only
echo back my own whispers.

Let me hear
the One who can speak;
let me sleep beneath
the wings of One who cares;
let me be moved
by One who has been
the bedrock of generations;
and I will give up
my idols.