Thursday, March 24, 2011

Reflection: Unexpectations

Lots of unexpected things have happened in my life the past few days.  I haven't had the time or the will to post something every day, and I don't know when my next post will be.

I suppose what keeps me focused on what I must do this week is that, even though I did not expect the events that have happened, God expected them, and He must think I can handle them if I'm caught in their flow.

It is kind of like what Gandalf told Frodo about the ring.  He was supposed to have it.  Some superior force moved it into his possession.  Despite his dark task, Frodo could take some comfort in knowing that a great Power for good wanted him to bear the burden.

Here's the scene from the movie.

In this instance, I'm not the ringbearer, nor am I Samwise.  I am part of the Fellowship, though.  A small part, but a part.  I'll do my best to support the others in the group and play my role in the drama.  Hopefully, I can help others who are dealing with these unexpected things more directly.  I would encourage everyone caught on the periphery of unexpected events to do the same.

Monday, March 21, 2011

Poetry: The Eager Blade

Today is the first full day of Spring.  In the past the qualifier, "full," was not needed.  It was simply, "the first day of Spring."  Nowadays we long to have things before they have reached their fullness.  Is that a good quality?

I'm not sure if this poem addresses that question, but it is a poem about Spring.

The Eager Blade

Cautiously,
So very wary,
Do your cousins creep into the light.

They probe the air
For barest breath of frost,
And finding it, retreat into the soil.

Not you.
You stir,
And strain against
The dumb earth,
Rising and reaching
For the burning life
That beckons
Above the treetops,
Exulting
In its touch.
To what end?
Eager blade,
Will you flourish
In the light,
Scion of your kind?
Or will Winter's death rattle cast you into darkness?

I admire you.
Risking
Everything.
Bringing new life into the realm
Dominated
For so long
By Death
Is noble,
And worthy
Of imitation.

May Spring be a time of flourishing for you!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Poetry: The Passing of Time

I remember how dreadfully slow the passage of time was when I was younger.  If I wanted something and did not have it, or if I had a task that had to be completed before I could do what I wanted, time seemed to expand almost limitlessly.  A minute was a grievous weight, and an hour's interminable span was a terror.

Here's a poem inspired by that experience.  I dedicate it to every student to whom I've ever given a detention.

The Passing of Time

The quivering tongue of Time
Speaks painfully slow syllables.
With uncompromising face,
He glowers at dazed children.

His nimble, malicious hands,
Untiring throughout the centuries,
Heap burdens harder to bear
Than any devised by Pharisees.

His seconds cascade like rain
On the surface of swollen rivers.
His minutes depend like fruit
Found rotten upon first tasting.

Like hammers in giants' hands,
His hours, arrayed in menace,
Strike mercilessly at those
Who wallow in isolation.

But game, and song,
And food, and sleep,
And work, and love
Will wound Him deep.

So arm yourself,
Young lad or lass,
And you will cause
This Time to pass.

Spend your time wisely today!