Arts

The Arts section of Orient Lodge

Who are you in Zarephath?

Who are you in Zarephath?
The widow?
Her son?
The prophet?
One of the many
nameless
worshipers of Ba’al?

I often feel like the widow
preparing to eat
the last of my meal
and die.

Yet unexpectedly
the voice of The Lord
comes
in the form
of a stranger
asking for food
and promising
there will be
enough.

I think of the times
I’ve come close
to losing
that which I’ve loved most
on this earth
only to have
the stranger,
the prophet
intercede.

Who are you at Zarephath?
Can we accept
the endless oil and meal
and become
the voice of the Lord
the prophet
to someone else?

A Found Journey

“I will arise and go now”
“In leaves no step had trodden black”
“past Eve and Adam's,
from swerve of shore to bend of bay”
“where the wind’s like a whetted knife”

“Where are you going?
Where are you going?”
“ ‘Over the Mountains
Of the Moon,
Down the Valley of the Shadow, “

“I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o'er vales and hills,”

“It's when I'm weary of considerations,
And life is too much like a pathless wood”
that
“so much depends
upon

a red wheel
barrow”

“But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep, “

“And you that shall cross from shore to shore years hence are more to me, and more in my meditations, than you might suppose.”

“And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.”

Note:
This poem was written in response to a writers prompt for a poetry group I'm part of. It is made up almost entirely of lines lifted from some of my favorite poems.

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June

Rabbit, Rabbit, Rabbit.
A new month starts,
with the leaves
and heat
of summer
as the seedlings grow larger.

Each new year,
each new month,
each new day
is a chance
to turn over a new leaf,
as the old leaves pile up
each fall
on our yards.

We rake these new leaves
into giant piles
and leap into them
as last gasps
of joy
before the winter comes.

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One True Love

You were the one
I wanted to catch
and be caught by
when playing
Marco Pool
at the town pool
water dripping down
your laughing face
and arms
but I didn’t see you.

You were the one
I wanted to chase
and be chased by
during those games of tag
in the playgrounds
of my childhood
but you weren’t there.

You were the one
I wanted to discover
and be discovered by
on those
summer trips
of adventure and learning
when I climbed on
the dinosaurs
in the park
at the museum
but you must have left
or not yet arrived.

Across the gym floor
at the junior high dances
where only the cool kids
actually danced
I looked for you
from the boys side
over to the girls side
hoping to see you
hoping to be seen by you
hoping to find the courage
to cross the floor
and ask for a dance
and hoping
you would say yes,
but junior high dances
were nearly universal
disappointments.

On prom night
I went to the local
pizza joint
hoping to see you
hoping you would want
to see me
as we sat with our friends
exiled from the prom.

When I was finally
out on my own
and heading to bars
after work
to drink and dance
with co-workers
you were the one
I scanned the crowd for
hoping for romance.

Years later
after we both had failed marriages
under our belts
you were the one
I tried to find
amidst the hundreds
if not thousands
of online personals.

Now
our daughter
is going to
those junior high dances
and I hope
she’ll find her
one true love
after grad school
as we grow old
together.

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ADHD

It must be difficult,
he thought to himself
as he walked down the street
past the park
where he saw
squirrels
chasing one another,
to have ones attention
limited
to a single thought.

As he found himself
looking
at the flecks of sunlight,
bright and shiny,
dancing
in the splashing water
of the fountain
he wondered
how those
too busy
to see
these jewels
managed to keep going.

He stepped up his pace
to that of a New Yorker
late for a meeting
smiling
at the young mother
who watched the world
through red rimmed eyes
and the old homeless man
whose hand
shook
every so slightly
with each drink he took.

As he weaved
in and out
of the crowd
in his quickened pace
he wondered
how best
to address
the needs of underserved students
with ADHD,
the topic
of the coming meeting.

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