Wednesday, October 31, 2018


As spring breathes towards summer,
They come.
Hinting, hinting, at dreams of bluest purple,
They come.
Sweeping the skyline, lovely as a promise,
They come.

They are the punctuation
Between bottlebrush and Christmas bush;
Dancing with the golden brown of silky oaks,
And the bright mirage of flame trees,
They come,
And we smile at their coming.

Sing, flowers, sing!
Sing of the quiet places,
The shadowed and secluded,
The rest that summer needs,
Refreshment of the weary:
Twilight at noonday
In your gentle, purple haze.

Each year returning
You bless our bright Novembers,
We lift our eyes from scurry
And pause in our great hurry
As you grace our teeming city
With your flowers and your fronds

Thursday, October 25, 2018

Song of the Victims

Shattered ere we were formed,
Broken ere we could cry,
Trembling within our beds
To some cruel lullaby;

Pain was our very air,
Confusion wrapped us round,
Yet, in our deepest hearts,
We still knew up from down.

Oh, we have been the crushed,
Yet we rise up again
Strong where we are most weak,
Dancing where we are lame.

Looking you in the eye,
You who would make us small,
We have a king who cares,
The Father of us all.

He did not leave us there,
Bleeding from bitter spite,
We are wrapped in his robe
Lifted into the light.

Lifted into the light,
Light shining burning clear,
Drinking so deep of love,
Learning to shed our fear.

Waiting until the dawn,
Waiting till Kingdom come,
Waiting that perfect morn
When we behold the Son.

Wednesday, October 17, 2018

The dark cup

Take up the dark, dark cup,
Wine purpled, swelled with tears,
Bitter with haunted fear
The burden of the years.

Drink it, drink down the dregs
With sword-sharp shuddering,
Pain that congeals like ice
Screams through our muttering.

Pain? Yes like drinking thorns
Cruelly to lacerate,
One part our nightmare fears
One part is rage and hate.

One part the jealous soul,
Whipped by another’s joy,
One part the monstrous lies
That steal, kill and destroy.

Yes you must drink it down
In its entirety
Courage, and faith made bold
Name its mortality.

Here is compassion born
Here love is made complete
When death is swallowed up
There is no more defeat

Monday, October 15, 2018

Apple Blossom

I wore that perfume then! How it evokes
The memories of a night! Near fifty years
Have passed, and still I feel the things I felt.

The time was nearly Christmas; summer night
Laden with languid heat, the party held
Down by the water, in a dream-lit yard.
(The dreams, as I remember, were all mine,
Inchoate, helpless, fresh and sharp and strong,
And innocent as newly-mint sixteen.)

So little I recall: what dress? What food?
Only the perfume, and the magic sense
Of entering a world I had not known.

No, nothing happened, not a prince was there,
(At least not mine); only the summer night,
The velvet darkness sequinned with small lamps,
The heady mix of freedom and soft dreams,
The first toe stuck out into life’s glad stream,
And all the joys and sorrows yet to come.

The river of the years has borne me on
Without regret, for she still lives inside:
The dreaming girl who sees the beautiful
In every moment’s gift, still tender-glad
To be and to become: to reach, to love.

Thursday, October 11, 2018

Let Their Cry go up to Heaven

Let their cry go up to Heaven!
Let the earth hear it;
Let the sea stand still in its writhing,
To gather in their tears.
Let the clouds weep in sympathy
Upon this thirsting soil.
Let the grass blades supplicate,
And the sun scorch our clamour to silence,
So that we might hear their cry.

Let their cry go up to Heaven!
Let the angels pause to listen,
Lifting up the terrible pain.
Transmuting it to glory
As only Love can do.
There shall be a day of reckoning.

Let their cry go up to Heaven:
The broken and the tortured,
The disregarded, robbed of human worth
(Precious beyond our counting),
The misused, the throwaway people,
Thrown away, like rusted-up spare parts,
Or viewed as merely vermin
By some cold, Satanic glaze,
The sneered-at, the despised ones, who crawl with broken hearts:
Let their cry go up to Heaven.

Let their cry go up to Heaven!
Strip our ears
From the self-talk of our comfort,
Our cotton wool pretences,
The Machiavellian melodies
That politics sings loud.
Let us kneel down in the dust
And join our tears to theirs!
Let their cry go up to Heaven!

Wednesday, October 10, 2018

All is well

Emptied within the night, and the soft rain falling.
Lean back against the wind, feel the tendrils blowing,
And whisper, in the darkness, “All is well.”

Gentle, my heart, my heart, feel the glow of sunset
Warm in your deepest places. Do not fear the stars.
They are heralds of becoming. All is well.

Let the grass speak to you, it has borne all weathers.
Or be strong as the blossom, unafraid of fragile,
Dying to bring forth fruit; and all is well.

Lift up your face, drink of the light. Its promise
Sings over clouds, bedecking them with rare beauty.
Welcome both sun and shadow. All is well.

Hurricanes hurl you, and the wild torrents toss you,
Still he walks on the water, walks towards you,
And he is all your stillness. All is well.