Day 23 – Poetry for Lent

Taking Home With Us

Poem read by Sarah McElrath
The stars shine high
     above the clouds
     above the bombs
        which scatter us like dust
        every which way
        looking to settle
        but driven by winds
          of war
          and fear.

We try to take home with us
     a teddy bear for security
        of which we have none
     a photograph of family
        many whom have died
     a blue china tea pot -
     keepsake from happier times
        now hard to remember
     a heart burning with hope
        for a future
        for safety
        for a place to build
           to plant and grow roots
           find neighbors and friends.

We dream of things we have lost
and hold tight to what we still have. 

Day 22 – Poetry for Lent


It would be easier
to sleep
blanket of snow
tucked over your head
dreaming of sunny 
spring days

It is so difficult
to bloom
to turn your face up and 
greet the new day
when it is cold 
and lonely

But you, brave daffodil
brighten everyone’s winter
days just by being
and winter will not
last forever

One day the sun 
will kiss you
and you will trumpet
your joy to the world

Day 21 – Poetry for Lent

Oiy! The news can weigh me down. I feel like I’m generally an optimistic person, but lately, after I watch the news, it’s hard for me to be hopeful about the future of our country, environment, schools, water….

Missing hope

I boxed up hope 
some time ago
and can’t remember where I hid it.
I searched and found
despair and doubt,
and came across indifference 
buried deep within 
an empty chest.
But hope still came up missing.

I dug through pockets worn before,
paged through scrapbook memories,
even found a thread or two 
on lovers, family, friends.
But still hope came up missing.

A niggling fear begins to grow
I’ve caught it up with other things
and dumped or gave away 
to those with less.
I need it now,
I understand,
to clothe
my skeleton of stone.

But hope still comes up missing.

Day 20 – Poetry for Lent


Half way through Lent! I didn’t really realize how difficult it would be to do a poem a day for 40 days. Hence the resorting to Haiku now and then. : ) I saw the most amazing sunsets yesterday and today. And the stars! Incredible.

Teach me Your story
so I might know mine
so I can know others
so I’ll worship 
God of all
Ruler, Creator
beginning and end
of all that is known 
and what lies beyond

of all
a universe in
ever expanding wonder
body, brain, and soul
intricate workings
a marvelous mystery

End of all too
all roads, all lives 
return back to You
in time

Lord, You
make and unmake 
now remake me new
know me
name me
and love me too
when I circle back
iron drawn to Your magnet
a needle pulled ever 
to Your north

Day 19 – Poetry for Lent

Still, Small Whisper

Sometimes there is so much noise in the news, on social media. I feel like everyone is yelling and no one is listening. And then something happens, a friend in a car wreck, a co-worker loses a spouse, and it reminds me what is important–and what is just noise.


The wild, roaring 
rush of wind
surges through trees
like ocean breakers
crashing eternal 
on rocky shores.


Snapping branches
create staccato accents
amid percussive storms
that blow 
fear and hatred
through busy lives.


Hail rattles
down on hapless towns
hitting innocent bystanders
like stray bullets
and extinguishing the still, small 
whisper of love.


We are all
but a near miss,
 a second removed
from getting swept up 
and blown away.


Day 18 – Poetry for Lent


I would not leave
though she told me,
Go back, find rest
a husband
a home.

I could not leave
for she was 
a mother to me
her people, my family
her home, my home.

I dared not leave, for
how would she manage
alone and destitute
hands veined blue
legs morning shaky?

And so I followed
that I might be 
her hands young and strong
her legs spry in the morning
sturdy in the evening
her family in the new land
her daughter

Day 17 – Poetry for Lent

Muskrat Sighting

He shuffles along
in his fuzzy brown coat
little whiskery old man face
peering nearsighted around
in search of a mid-morning snack.
I step out the front door
to say hello, and he startles.
Those beetle-black eyes spot me
and he flees, 
odd bouncing gait comical, 
leathery tail dragging
behind like an unfastened belt.
Wait, I call,
but a faint splash from the ditch
is the muskrat's only answer.

I pile acorns by the bank
as a peace offering.

Day 16 – Poetry for Lent

Radical Grace

Revolution brewing                      Revolution
Hunger & rage                           brewing hunger
breed                                   and rage breed
Rebellion born                          unrest

Districts rise                          On a donkey
the Mockingjay                          Jesus
a symbol                                Savior
a tool unwillingly                      a Son willingly
wielded                                 sacrificed
to strike the capitol                   to save the people
violence justified                      forgiveness granted
They get what                           we got what
they deserve                            we didn't deserve

Day 15 – Poetry for Lent

Season Change

In Detroit today for a conference and when I was looking at the green water of the river, there was this weird whitish section floating down stream with birds sitting in the midst of it. I looked closer and noticed that it was a large chunk of ice. The Spring thaw is here!

icebergs on water
mini islands for the birds
spring thaw on rivers