Thursday, August 14, 2014

Unconsummated Love

I wrote this poem today, reflecting on the Vicky Beeching situation (VB is a high profile Christian songwriter, worship leader and performer who has just come out as gay and in favour of same sex marriage.) In contrast to our world that says that desire must be acted upon, I'm interested in capturing the sadness and beauty and hope of desire resisted for the sake of godliness. In this poem I've deliberately steered clear of painting the torridness of such attractions - that would be best done in a different poem.

unconsummated love

this song we’ve written
sits as sweetness on the page
as yet unsung
as yet unplayed
till it is heard
as a symphony
in another world.

sar 2014

Tuesday, August 12, 2014



who long
to eat fire
and not be burned

to climb the cliff
for the thrill of the fall
(knowing the bump at the bottom’s 
the best part of all) -

You who have tied yourself
to the galloping horse of tomorrow
whose heart ever races in the frantic chase to be there
whose soul cries ‘On, on, on!’ 
You for whom ‘Tomorrow!’ is the motivation for every breath
the flip side of every thought 
You for whom nostalgia is forward looking
whose eyes strain to see beyond horizons
and glimpse that place of All Good Things - 

Drink with me
to the impossible virtue 
of patience.

sar 2014

Saturday, August 9, 2014


When our kids were babies and toddlers, I remember speaking with other mums about 'First Time Obedience' and how it was a desirable thing that our children do as we ask first time, without question, complaint or delay. Fourteen and a half years into the parenting gig, the concept of FTO seems, well... odd. Do I want our kids to be obedient? Overall, yes. Do I want them to hop to my command just because I command it? No (Okay. Sometimes I do.) Looking back, I don't think that FTO was something that I ever really wanted. Or maybe it was appropriate when the kids were very small but I moved away from it gradually as they grew. For the last decade I think I've wanted them to be respectful of us, but also independent and thoughtful. I'm not sure I this is compatible with First Time Obedience.

Thoughts? Is FTO something ever spoken of now?

Thursday, August 7, 2014

On Mali and Love

[Inspired by our pup Mali who makes more mess in the house than the rest of us put together.]

On Mali and Love

I tell her ‘stop’ but she can’t comprehend
She chews my socks and rips apart the trees
I sew and sweep - it costs to have a friend
Can love be rich if it comes to us for free?

We sit outside and argue, sipping tea
Mali barks, you frown and I defend 
her right to talk and yell incessantly
(I’ve told her ‘stop’ but she can’t comprehend

the price of joy, so, like us, overspends.)
You turn and smile. I groan and yet agree.
Extend the loan. 
                                I hope to not offend -- 
She chews our socks and rips apart the trees

but you’re a cyclone to her gentle breeze!
I’ll soon be no more able to pretend
this love comes cheap. I’ll sort through the debris
and sew and sweep. It costs to have a friend

Or to have had,’ I’ll say as gloom descends 
and pay the bill and wonder at the fee.
Plants regrow and socks and hearts can mend
Can love be rich if it comes to us for free?

sar 2014

Sunday, August 3, 2014

Prayer for the unsteady

To stay stable at sea they say
you must look to the horizon.

But I am tossed,
jerked from agony to torture
anguish to fear! Fear!
I cannot silence the screaming in my ears!
Cannot catch my thoughts to pin them.
Devoured from without,
Erupting within,
Chest aching,
breath shallow,
eyes darting every way

Steady my gaze
Fix my eyes

on you.

sar 2014

Saturday, August 2, 2014

A prayer for healing

Father of mercies and God of all power. You are our only help in this time of need. You knit us together in our mothers’ wombs. You are sovereign over our every breath. Every cell in our body jumps at your command. Please heal S. Cure him of this tumor. Give him more days on earth to serve you. 

Father of mercies. You have showered S with your grace. Unworthy as he is, through Jesus you have fitted him for life eternal with you. Please also grant him this lesser blessing of a longer life on earth. Spare J and the children the grief of losing husband and father so soon. 

In the hours and days that come, give strength to S’s body. Guide the minds and hands of the doctors as they make decisions and carry out  surgeries. Comfort S, J and the children with a confidence in your goodness. Preserve them from the temptations of the enemy. Give them patience under this affliction. Above all, speed the day when this and all other trials are ended and we can live with you in the world that will know no more tears or crying or pain.