Monthly Archives: May 2020

BRANCHES

BRANCHES

Once upon a time

A time once long ago

There lived in a tree

Five branches in cordiality

 

They appeared the same

But individuals by name

All stretched outwards

Dwelling side by side

 

Then some stretched further

But all stretching in one accord

Until one day someone decided

To be the one in front

 

Competitiveness ensued

Entering the leafy-forest-glade

And the branches began to rage

 

They buffeted and bumped

Each other out of place

Leaning over and strangling

Their neighbour’s advance

 

The woodsman eventually 

Decided he’d had enough

His axe was swung at the trunk

And down the whole wood family came

The axe-man had his day

They were well and truly rumbled

As he grumbled and cut them all away

 

No more vying for position

No green-coloured-envy –

only contrition

Drug delusion

DRUG DELUSION

All tuckered-out

Gasping for a bonus breath

All displayed-out across the sprawling floor

Horizontal jitterbugging – trying to rise

Collapsed again – with harmful jarring of limbs

 

At last – a staggered concertina – making it to the lamp post

Tree hugging imitation of the iron pylon

The head squeaks – needing oil – and tries to scan

The horizon – seeing a building walking like a man

 

No offered hand lest the helper fall too

No policeman to offer a – where to go – for you

And to think these drugs can be sales-talked

Into your life – held forth in dealer’s hand

Like some smiling python inducing romance

 

To get you persuaded and on board

Is the goal – so your puppeteer can return

With nothing to offer but death in a capsule

Producing frantic nervous-breakdown reward 

“C’mon” he says “take a chance…”

 

I cannot be heard above your internal din

When I cry “throw it in the bin!”

I cannot be heard when I say – “walk away…”

 

Find the other kingdom – get across the line

To the place that’s not in the war

A ‘land’ of peace and joy

Receiving what the new deal offers

We cry: “Only Christ can satisfy!”

The Deliverer

The deliverer divested of his robe

Mocked and spat upon and purple clothed

Stumbles with certain-purpose

To take it all on board

 

The full heavy load – immeasurable tonnage

Suffering and resisting the foe

Rises again to offer his hands

To the doubting-Thomas-world

Of chaotic man

 

Rejected

REJECTED 

Isaiah 53/3

He is despised and rejected by men,

A Man of sorrows and acquainted with grief.

And we hid, as it were, our faces from Him;

He was despised, and we did not esteem Him.

Not every preacher has found ministry/sermonising plain sailing.

Not every sermon that is preached is welcome.

At times the majority of the population are wrong – and can’t hear what they need to hear.

This is just a fact of life. The fact of a fallen world.

Smoking was once welcomed and embraced by the majority. The majority were wrong.

What does the preacher experience who is on the receiving end of his rejected message and person?

The Lord Jesus Christ, and God the Father, have a long list of descriptions in the scriptures, regarding their character and personality.

We could list the names of Jehovah, each adding a nuance to our understanding of who and what He is.

Jehovah-nissi, (The Lord our banner), Jehovah-tsidkenu (The Lord our righteousness), and so on…

Jesus is the lily of the valley, the bright and morning star, the fairest of ten thousand, Emmanuel (God with us), Saviour, and so on…

But Jesus, The Son of God, was also an itinerant preacher.

So He is the first we can think of – whose message and person were rejected.

Yet also – the common people heard Him gladly.

He was received by some and rejected by others, and yet the calibre and spiritual immaturity of his needy followers was exposed when everyone ran away, forsaking Him,  at the time of His wrongful arrest.

Paul the apostle is another example of a person and their message being rejected.

2 Timothy 4:14-16 (NKJV)

14 Alexander the coppersmith did me much harm. May the Lord repay him according to his works. 15 You also must beware of him, for he has greatly resisted our words.

16 At my first defense no one stood with me, but all forsook me. May it not be charged against them.

Again some believed and received – others rejected Paul and his words – and we read the list of the hardships he endured because of the gospel, and it’s rejection.

There are modern examples of persons rejected along with their message.

Not every preacher gets pats on the back after delivering his sermon – in the every (Sun)day setting – of church.

Perfect oneness of mind is a marvel to me. I could probably count on one hand the number of experiences I have had – of being in total unity with fellow believers. I mean real unity.

Truly it was a blessing and very pleasant. (Psalm 133)

But it calls for oneness of mind and right attitude of heart.

When we don’t agree with the preacher and his message – do we reject it?

If it is a false doctrine we need to reject it, there’s no denying that.

But with what attitude, do we do the rejecting?

Is it possible we fail to realise our attitude is worse than the points we don’t agree with?

Response?

RESPONSE?

I guess whether Christian or non-Christian – when it comes to writing articles, making comments, writing a post, or preaching a sermon, it is stating the obvious to say that we want to think, that what we have spoken or communicated in whatever form – is relevant.

Think of the thousands who put fingers to keys in blogging format to get heard/responded to.

We quite like the idea of others being affected by what we say, – do we not?

Eliciting either affirmation, wonder, admiration, pleasant surprise, thanks, agreement et al.

All responses we, (unconsciously perhaps?), seek for, when communicating.

You write a post on some pop star – and it adds another ten people to the ‘fan club’/followers, or they love the song you have posted, and look for more of same.

Political movements seek to harvest followers for their cause or politician.

And of course, those running a business are delighted when you respond by ordering their product.

Posting – speaking – communicating – blogging – vlogging – whatever involves visual or verbal communication has usually some goal in mind.

And we sit back in our chairs satisfied, when positive response is received.

It’s a basic human instinct or need to be appreciated.

When the negative response comes along, we of course don’t like it. And either ignore it – or enter into verbal fisticuffs with the perpetrator.

(Which usually is non-profitable and a waste of time. The exception proves the rule when both parties learn something)

Now normally this introduction of mine would have some such above mentioned goal in mind, i.e. eliciting response of some kind, as I lead us to some salient point.

That is – it would seek to get your affirmation or  positive response, followed by actions you might take – as you – whatever…

Join the club or buy the product or change your life.

But guess what? – that’s it. I simply want to point out we are all looking for response.

So when I talk to God – I am looking for response. I send my words to Him in prayer, and at times am more conscious of His response than others.

I guess you didn’t expect this to end up on the subject of prayer?

Again – guess what? – neither did I…

[No response to this Post – called for, or is there?]

Round and round the garden

Round and round the garden

I would like to reciprocate with myself

Pats on the back – what else?

Round and round the garden goes the reciprocator

One step – two steps – thirty steps later

Building up speed as I go along

Into the mouth goes the Fisherman’s friend

Giving a false sense of extra air at each bend

 

Round past the flower pot and the sitting stones

Ten more blades of grass trampled in my advance

As the new kind of lawnmower continues to prance

This is a mini world it would seem

Variations on a theme – as you reciprocate my dream

That pretends I’m out and about and satisfied too

 

Secretly I harbour dastardly plans

To go and demand

That the coffee shop opens for me

So I can have my coffee-card stamped

And sup leisurely

 

My friend has gone to a foreign country

It might as well be – it’s his back garden for tea

Never the twain shall meet he and I

Until this obnoxious storm has gone

And we all stand together no longer forlorn

 

So if you get a chance to scream

Go to bed instead – for another dream

Don’t despair we’ve all been there

Pick someone and offer some care

Plus – go round and round the garden

like the teddy bear

Not getting through

NOT GETTING THROUGH

Now there ain’t much extra I can say

Cause I’ve been talking since the beginning of May

You’re a mystery and I can’t catch the full picture anyway

At least that’s – what I now feel to say

 

The other full picture is far far away beyond the clouds

The clouds of more than night and day

And as I mystically stand to pray

You are out the door – hurriedly on your way

 

And when we meet up again you don’t engage

When I speak – you say:

 “I don’t wish to know that – kindly leave the stage”

I’m – taken aback by your coldness – I feel under siege

 

You want to say destructive things

While a posy of peace is what I bring

You don’t hear a word of my attempt to assuage

The anger you are dishing out like some kind of plague

 

Your human heart is seized-up and bound

All packed together and hard as the dusty ground

To disentangle the fishing line – best to start in your prime

All confused and fussed-up and breaking down

 

Try to get some help as you let out another yelp

And I dash for your shoulders to keep you on your feet

I knew there was a purpose in my words as we meet

Eventually you have to listen –

you think my spoken words are deep

 

At least we have become half-friends

We might never meet again

I give you a piece of paper with some kind of message

Plus my address – email – telephone –

but still you won’t let me – meet your need

 

I put my arm around you one more time

Look you in the eye and see everything’s still not fine

You half heard all I had to say

There’s love waiting when you get back

I hope you find peace and get on the right spiritual track

It’s a Bookshelf World

IT’S A BOOKSHELF WORLD

Heads peer at us – full-screen or to the side

Mouths mouthing every conceivable Covid theme

Experts and not – giving opinion in the rectangular frame

One after the other in different parts of the globe

That global world of mini caves with furniture

 

Furniture – have you noticed? – you bet you have

An insight – a strong conclusion is concurred

[I see much paper is still with print

Books – hard-copy called –

stuffed unceremoniously in bookshelves walled]

 

Backgrounds countless in every private room

Stacked in space-filling fashion

Some neat – others replete – or crammed

All shapes and sizes – arrangements galore

 

Titles curiously glanced at – by you and I

Some titles too small for the human eye

We eagerly look to see their reading habits

 

Yes low and behold

bookshelves – bookshelves – bookshelves

All in array – everyone has one – has many –

Bookshelves well made and hanging together

Real wood and veneer adjacent side by side

 

Vertical stacked books horizontal as well –

Supported in rickety Mondrian pattern

Or – all displayed volumes in volumetric show

Best of binding don’t you know

 

Bookshelves – all have been exposed

Not things of the past as you might think

Bookshelves on show in a row

Ugly Covid’s by-product bonus for the eyes

 

Glimpses of how the other half live

They all love their bookshelves

We cannot fail to see

They all love their bookshelves

It’s a bookshelf-world made from the tree

 

Bookshelves – bookshelves – bookshelves

Everyone talks in their bookshelf room

Bookshelves – ‘If I ever see another bookshelf…’

Bookshelves on the TV

Bookshelves – it’s overwhelming me

 

I thought you said it’s all computerised?

While there before our eyes

Regardless of the subject-matter discussed

Regardless of Isolation – all locked in – at home –

Have bookshelf will travel

Books and more books –  bookshelf spree

 

With the all-encompassing comfort-zone-shelf

People – proud – chose that room – to let the world see

They still love their bookshelf – not even tidy

They say it doesn’t have to be

 

The humble bookshelf background –

or are we looking at a shop?

Bookshelves – surely a library is before me?

 

No – that’s their’s – in their home

(most advanced persons of the 21st century)

A bookshelf exposé

 

Bookshelves –

The ones that are not meant to be…

I don’t remember poems

I DON’T REMEMBER POEMS

I don’t remember poems

I – of former full-script-of-lines-remembered

– type person

Standing to play my part as Lentulus

 

I don’t remember poems

I – of former full-on stamping-forward youth

Ready to take the world on

 

I don’t memorise poems –

“Who wrote that I often ask?”

Why – it was KR – me myself and I

 

Written –

it must have fallen unnoticed

Into the back of my folder

 

I don’t speak poems from memory

I have to shy away

All shy within – slipping out of sight

Into the corner – as young men or women

Recite and rant their full contribution

With no page in front of them

 

What memory have I?

Enough to invent more words

Get ‘em down on paper or screen

Speak ‘em out and forget them

But you can glean

Making them what they seem

Or what – you think they mean

 

They tell me there is a diminishing with age

However memory is some old wine

So you’re wrong – it grows in value

What value – a memory brings

 

A softly spoken man – (I’ve met one or two)

Softly spoken – they speak perpetual poetry

Having never written a poem

 

But am I too soft in valuing other things more

When freely distributing my text at the drop

of an asking voice?

Help me or help me explore…

 

The hypothesis that:

Friendship is greater than words

Even though writing them we cannot ignore

 

I don’t store –

up – poems in the recesses of the mind

I get them on the white shore –

safe from the stormy blast

Paper – that ancient reciprocal of lyric or text

Still lends it’s hand as a bank-vault-archive

Pinning these thoughts down

But don’t ask me to extemporaneously repeat them

I won’t make the effort to write them on the heart

 

So in all of this subject matter

In danger of being a major made out of a minor

I have given my explanation as to

why I stand with this page

Let’s just say ‘on page’ is what I want to do

Unimpressed? –

me too

talking to AMSTERDAM

Talking to AMSTERDAM

Once again coming across old literature, caused me to look back on my evangelistic visits to Amsterdam.

Flying to the Netherlands, my wife’s home country.

I would ‘tithe’ a week per year, of my holidays from work, to go on the streets and into cafes etc. to engage in conversations with all kinds of people. Wherever I found a willing, listening ear.

And of course it takes all sorts to make a world.

I took an 8-person team there once for the same reason.

Otherwise I usually went with a friend or a few times on my own. I of course acquired friends who lived in Amsterdam and would sometimes work with others in local churches.

‘Gossiping the gospel’ as it is sometimes referred to.

It’s been a while since I was last there, on such a mission.

I wonder how empty Amsterdam is at the moment?

Those were enjoyable times. It appealed to my ‘hippie’ personality, (if there is such a thing).

Any Christians reading this post, might inform me, if hitting the streets (pre-covid 19) to spread the gospel of Christ, is still on the agenda?

If so, let me know of such outreaches that you know of, so my enthusiasm for the younger-generation-servants-of-Christ, can be boosted, knowing the baton is still being carried.

Putting seeds-in-motion, was my foundational  motivation, in going to the streets of Amsterdam.

The bible tells us that one sows, another waters – but God alone can give the increase of the shared message of the gospel. (I Cor. 3/6)

If there was ever a time (though there always has been), when the good news of God’s love is greatly needed in a world staggering around in zombi-like fashion, needing answers – it is now.

Now indeed is the accepted time (II Corinthians 6/2).

I enjoyed my times encountering all kinds of weird and wonderful people, and of course, had the bonus of going to visit the art galleries.😎

As the old cliche goes: ‘I’m not as young as I used to be…’

But watch me as I slap my wrists and tell myself: ‘That’s no excuse – get out there.’

Anybody want to go with me?

See you post-covid 19!