Category: Poetry

Manna Enough – Stop Living like an Orphan


Manna Enough – Stop Living like an Orphan

Adopted, precious daughter
but an orphan in my mind;
stowing up my manna thinking,

“He won’t provide, he lied.”

My fear breeds maggots
like the manna that I hoard
scrapings for tomorrow
turn to rotting, stinking mold

My heart a barren wilderness,
a mirage of abandonment, stomach empty;
but it’s raining down bread!

There’s manna provided in plenty

If I open my eyes and look
He knows exactly what I need,
He will always be here

wanting the very best for me.

To the brink of starvation,
in the strongest of my cravings,
I’ll trust his Daddy heart

and remember I need His saving.

It’s enough for today, this moment
Manna enough to get me through
My Daily Bread, fresh each morning

ever faithful, ever true

Orphan, open your heart!
The deed’s been signed and sealed.
He’s never letting go,

just let your soul be healed.

Inspired by a sermon by Pastor Tim Dunham on Exodus 16:1-16 and John 6:26-35 as well as the meditation in this video by Caroline Williams.


Early Flight


Early Flight

The morning holds its breath
in that darkness before the dawn
eyes sticky from my sleep
face pale, haggard, drawn
Desperately needing my coffee
the neighbors surely hate me
Grinding up the beans
(I’m a cowboy coffee drinker lately)
Last minute packing
it’s frenzy in my mind
surely I’ve forgotten something
I resign with a heavy sigh
Waiting for my ride
slowing down my breath
besides mosquitoes buzzing
only sounds of sleepiness
A hint of adventure
to places unknown
a flight too stinkin’ early
just to go to the same timezone!
Prisoner of the Pit


Prisoner of the Pit

Chained in a pit, deep and dark,
defined by existence in those depths.
Fingers raw and bleeding
trying to claw her way to freedom,
slumping at last in the miry bottom,
despair like lead settling in her veins.
Then suddenly the sun shines in
and bathes the prisoner in light,
scattering the simpering shadows,
bringing warmth and hope.
But the sun passes on
as all good things do;
the transitory warmth
never reaching the ice in her marrow.
And she’s left in the dark again,
at the bottom of the pit…
Photo credit:
The Words I Speak to Myself


The Words I Speak to Myself

“Look at you,
you filthy scum.
“Who do you think you are?
Do you really think you’re worth listening to?
“Why don’t you try harder?
You’re obviously lazy,
or totally incapable
or just a complete failure.”
The words I speak to myself
are words I’d never say to anyone else
The grace and love I pour out for others
There’s not a drop left for myself.
The words I speak to myself
shape who I am
I listen to myself
and believe
But the words I speak to myself
should be like the words I speak to others
dripping with grace
soaked in understanding
drenched in love
I should say,
“Look at you,
you delightful human.
Worth more than gold.
“You are a precious daughter.
worthy of the greatest attention,
“You are hardworking,
And even when you fall,
you get back up and strive onward.
“You are worthy of love.
The greatest Lover in all of history
found you so worth having
that He died so that he could have you.
“Live in that truth.
That you are precious,
“Reform the words you speak to yourself
speak the truth of who you are
because the words you say to yourself
become your identity.”
Dirty Mirror


Dirty Mirror

Vivid blue eyes
blurred by tears
stare back at me
through the dirty mirror
I see
every single flaw:
weight gain
Just when I’m starting
to feel confident again
the mirror
the camera
the insensitive friend
reminds me
I’m not good enough
Will I ever be?
working so freaking hard
to be perfect
Why am I grasping, straining, clutching
striving after the impossible,
the unnecessary?
I’m loved
I’m treasured
without me trying
sans my effort
minus my strivings
I’m accepted
in spite of my imperfections
together with my failures
along with my problems
when the mirror mocks me
when the shame won’t die
when failure stalks me
because His love is constant
never changing
ever embracing
deeper than a bottomless ocean
broader than East to West
Snails, Dust, and Suitcases – Musings on Moving


Snails, Dust, and Suitcases – Musings on Moving

My room is eerily empty
dust gathers on the floor.
Taped up boxes filled to the brim
hauled, one-by-one, out the door
The contents of my half-packed suitcase
the nearly empty bookcase
with only a few abandoned volumes
filling up the empty space
Crumbs of this,
pieces of that
this paper a treasure,
that one trash
A thrill for the new
an ache for the old
leaving is never easy
but the house is being sold
Cobwebs in the corner-
they’ve always been there-
water heater’s broken
the snails and spiders stare
The breezeway is filthy
stains my feet black
my aircon keeps breaking
the screen door pops back
Frogs on my doorknob
coming up the drain
cockroach on my shoulder
snails appear when it rains
You could say it’s got “character”
Full of it’s own unique flaws
But it’s the place I felt at home
and certainly not without cause
Three whole years
doesn’t sound like much
but it sure adds up when
you’re living life and such
Well, we’re not going far
but it’s the end of a season
I’ll pine for the lizard’s song
but I won’t miss the sneezin’
Impossible Expectations


Impossible Expectations

I impose
impossible expectations
on myself
but who do I think I am?
demanding flawless, perfect;
when all He wants is “try”

I know what you’re made of,
He says,
I get it, I’ve been there.
All I want is you here,
with me,
in this process,
doing your best,

It’s the journey I care about,
walking with you here and now.
Forget about the end product,
I’ve got that covered, remember?
All you need to worry about
is right now,
this moment.

Strive to love me first,
let your life flow stem
from that one spring.
Ditch your impossible expectations
and stop beating yourself up!

I love you,
you’re precious to me
and you know what?
I’m so incredibly proud of you.
Slow Your Breath Down


Slow Your Breath Down

Breathe in.
Fill your lungs and belly.
Breathe out.
It’s sweet, nourishing water.
Breathe in.
Sink deeper.
Breathe out.
Surrender more fully.
Breathe in.
This ocean has no shores.
Breathe out.
This ocean has no bottom.
Breathe in.
You are safe and cherished here.
Breathe out.
You are delighted in here.
Breathe in.
You are treasured.
Breathe out.

You are loved.

Inspired by the Future & Forestry song after which this poem is named as well as C.S. Lewis’ book, The Voyage of the Dawn Treader.  As the ship drew nearer Aslan’s country the waters grew sweet, and filled their bellies… and satisfied them.

Soul Rubbed Raw


Soul Rubbed Raw

Soul rubbed raw
heart heavy with tears
lead in my veins
stalked by my fears

Wondering why
is my skin so frail
that every word pierces
like rusty old nails

Hiding in the dark
longing to be with
desperately needing freshness
yet feeling old, dry, stiff

Tears burn forth
limbs grow weak
heaviness prevails
loneliness still seeks


Nearly all of my posts end in hope, or at least have a thread of hope running through.  While communicating that hope is one of the goals I’ve had for this blog since it began,  I’m learning that fully inhabiting and expressing pain acknowledges that raw truth that there isn’t always visible hope.  An expression of pain doesn’t always end with a neat, happy resolution. Sometimes it just confesses the darkness and despair felt in that moment. 

This poem was written some time ago, but I share it to encourage you not to stifle your emotions or bottle up your feelings.  Deep, strong emotions don’t just go away.  Find a healthy way to express them that works for you, whether that’s poetry or some other form of creative writing, art, sculpture, music, dance or just talking to a friend. 

Be honest. Be raw. 

Rage if you need to.  Weep if you need to. 

It may not make everything better, but it will be a big step toward healing.  And it will be much healthier than trapping those toxic sentiments inside.

What have you learned about handling emotions in your own life?  What works for you?  What doesn’t work?