From Walls and Hearts

It grows on walls and in the soul
Down below the mountainside
It tears apart strong barriers
Behind such walls we would hide.

It’s green with life and makes us see
How this place is not all pain
It always climbs the highest point
Finds its way in sun and rain.

Persistent in its fortitude
Its beauty soothes that sad eye
And is a light in quiet peace
That spreads its warmth both low and high.

In The Valley

Say a prayer for me
That I might conquer.

Say a prayer for me
That I might submit.

Say a prayer for me
That I might turn.

Say a prayer for me
That I might stand.

Say a prayer for me
That I might listen.

Say a prayer for me
That I might speak.

Say a prayer for me
That I might stop.

Say a prayer for me
That I may begin.

Say a prayer for me
For I am not enough.

Say a prayer for me
For the answers are not within.

Say a prayer for me
For I am weak.

Say a prayer for me
That I may forgive.

Say a prayer for me
That I might tell the truth

Say a prayer for me
That I might love,

even myself.

Fine

“And I had no day; I only had night.”
I hate it when people ask me how I am
Lying is so shameful and sad
I hate even being tempted to say,
“I’m fine. How are you?”
Every morning when the sun rises
and the alarm blares
I know that it did not end
I know that I have to do it all again
I know that I can’t cope and still
still, I have to get up
I know that I can’t deal
and the world just wants me to deal
just wants me to say,
“I’m fine.”

But I haven’t been fine in a long time…
Have I ever been fine?
I don’t know
I’ve only really felt fine when I was in love
and sometimes at Church…

I don’t even know what fine really is
Is fine when people do things to you as a kid?
Is fine when your father dies before you even get to grow up and be pissed at him?
Is fine watching your grandmother die?
Her rail-thin frame just tumbled down the basement stairs
She landed laying in a position that even a small child knows a body does not lay in.
Is fine getting old enough to add your own sins to your list?
Is it figuring out how to hurt other people?
Is fine feeling ashamed?
Is fine how you should feel when your friends wrap their car around a tree in the rain?
Is fine when you volunteer but only your friends get sent off to die–
and they died good and dead.
Is fine the relationships you mangled?
Is fine the friends who killed themselves?
Is fine your weakness?
Is fine your hopelessness?
Is fine the dark night that does not seem to end?

I am not fine.

fine is a foreign country that I have only seen in magazines.

But the sun still rises
The morning came again
So how are you?

Stand and Wait

If you have spoken
You will come through
And you will continue to lead
In various ways
You will always get my attention
And so you have it
Please do not stop teaching me
Please do not stop loving me
I know that you have already said you would never leave nor forsake
And I know your word stands true
But I did not know how hard it would be
To wrestle my own heart
I am afraid
Please do not leave me
Please…

The Daughters of Lot

You lived in a wicked city
Perhaps you were born there
Perhaps you were not
Perhaps you were teenagers
Perhaps you were in your forties
No one knows your names for sure.

Your uncle’s God destroyed your home
Perhaps your friends were dead
And maybe their children,
That you used to baby-sit.

And man did not seem to possess the capability to destroy cities yet
And so you could not doubt the cause
Your uncle’s God.

Did your father love your uncle’s God?
Did he on the day his home was destroyed
and his wife (your mother)
was turned to salt?

He begged the angels to let you all go to that town
But then he was too afraid to live there
And so you
(the three of you)
went up to the hills
(which is where your dad was told to go in the first place)
and you lived in a cave.

Did you think that that valley was only the beginning?
Did you think the whole world was being destroyed,
One city at a time?
Did you miss your mother?

How did you cope?
How did you attempt to comfort each other?
Did your father lose his mind?
How could you have not?