I hear the drums.
A cold night waits
in sleepless fits I find my sins
they wait for me like faithful friends
reminding me of pasts that cannot be undone
and fears that would consume.
I hear them.
The hottest suns
that baked my dream-filled days with diamonds and hope
and showed me lifting songs
and haunting pains
and joys in lives unknown by my brothers.
The beat is steady.
What that snakes and scorpions failed
and men with guns in foreign lands
who’s black hearts bled in cruel laughter given
at the sight of innocence wounded.
I hear the drums.
Mother weep at my grave
and pray at my side
I am gone astray
and in this hot wind I feel nothing
but chapped lips and dried throat and burned skin
hot like an oven
the fire will not subside
and with it a gripping pain of slavery.
The beating builds.
But in cold icy caves beneath colder mountains
I found a heart that would not lie down.
Hear me mother.
Where is my armor?
I am pierced and I have no shield
and in the hot sands I will be forgotten
a child of promise full of hope and wonder
lost by his own hand
a long drawn out battle
I could not find my sword.
But still I hear the drums.
Sing to me sweet Jesus
tell me of what my heart desires
Will I die in this sand?
Will it always be so hot and so cold?
Will I be covered in the desert dunes and forgotten?
I know you see.
I know you hear the drums.
It is difficult to see the way
with all the comfort
and filthy skin
and other things that have their place– just not here and now.
I would change the course today
and steer this ship another way
and have a drink to what’s gone past
and leave it there behind.
and you fall.
Behind you see what you never wished to see
and hear what you never wished to hear
and then comes the feeling
and you really didn’t want that.
The people you sin with
they like to hang around
and either they don’t understand
or they want to sin some more.
But the worst
is when they want to keep their options open
even if it is only
in some small emotional way.
I have imagined a thousand wrong ways
and they did not lead to light
and all that time and all that thought
there still is only you.
I tried some things and I believe
That They might not forget me now
and so I see a piece of you
in all I wish I’d never done.
They have broken in a field of grey
That would not last the winter long
And so the seeing done in dark
sets it’s eyes upon the flame.
If you pardon me just now
I would take a break to hold
And feel the warmth within my hands
As I sip my cup.
There was a man today
who likes to ride his bike
and so I was not alone.
Tired in the fullest sense
I run until I can’t no more
And mama told me the world would kick
I should a’ listened better.
I can’t control what I believe
and so I cannot walk away
may I listen to my mama
before she leaves me here.
The pain is making things so hard
and I just want to lay it down
but in the snow the reaper waits
and I can’t just give up.
I know it will work out
even if only in the end
and though this life be full of trial
the maker will descend.
I know that judgement comes
with fire and a sword
and if I lose all other hope
I cling to this oh Lord.
I pray that I can see
a fraction of your love
and in this pain I bend my knee
my heart turns up above.
Now is the hour of my death
My light has grown dim
Who will pray for my soul,
as I languish here between worlds?
It has been a long journey
to run out of me
perhaps there was just a lot more of me
than any of us realized.
Now is the twilight before the dark
And there is a silence before the fire
What will God do in this space?
Now that I begin to unravel.