Her Name

Her name

meant stability,


to me.


Like something granite;

Mt Rushmore.

Or something tectonic;



Now I see

her name.

I remember she has gone:

my mind stops.


If minds

could lose their breath,

mine would gasp,

and struggle to restart.


Conceive the inconceivable;

Australia sinking,

Mt Rushmore dissolving.

Has she truly left this earth?


Her name

engraved in granite,

her soul,

amongst the stars?



as grass and shadows,

is timed to wilt and fade,

by the measure of the sun.



abiding still,

yet timed as well,

awaits a similar fate.


Granite melts

in fervent heat.

Her name

eternal memory.


And both will be


as Christ

returns again.





like a python,

slithers upon us.

All teeth;

piercing our flesh,

making us cry out

in anguish.

Then a long, slow constriction-

suffocating and




like a beacon,

shines upon us.

All glorious;

warming our flesh,

causing us to sing

for joy.

Then a peace


invigorating and



Teetering between

death and hope;

oscillating and




like a promise,

of death postponed.

All dewy;

charming our senses,

helping us to forget

our end.

Then an unwelcome


unraveling and




like a thief,

takes everything.

All dreams;

removing our illusions,

leaving us with Him


Then a time of


ennobling and





Sometimes I sit

thinking only of you.

My heart grows calm

as tears fall from my eyes.


Sometimes I walk

watching my steps.

But my mind and my heart

are only with you.


If only my arms

could find you to hold.

If only my eyes

could see you again.


All that I hear

is only clatter,

that which isn’t

Your voice.


I shake my head

to clear the noise.

I call Your name,

and I call Your name.


I call Your name

in my lonely heart.

How long

must we be apart?


As I sit

tears are falling from my eyes.

What I’ve been and what I am,

and what I may become.


These tears

are of sorrow and of joy.

For what was and is,

and what is to come.



Three Names

When you were born you were so small.

And you had blue eyes shaped like almonds.

Your mom thought you looked like her mother.

Your dad thought you looked tough.

That’s why they named you Kirk, after Kirk Douglas.

But Kirk is also the church, the house of the spirit.

Your house had potential.


Twenty-three years later you left home,

seeking adventure and true life.

And you were named Francis.

Childhood ended. Duty began.

Potential became kinetic.

But you still lived for yourself.

Every movement to satisfy your belly,

and to win love from others.


Twenty-three years later you died in water,

and your new life began.

And you were named John.

God is good.

The Spirit dwells within His church now.

Kinesis turning toward stillness and peace.

Unfocused motion resolving into hesychasm.


Then your mother died.

And again you died.

Not in spirit or in body,

but in some strange, intangible way.

Shaking the stillness,

and making the future uncertain.


I see you now and I wonder,

“what will you make of this third act?”

Will you seek the Lord,

and let him heal you?

Losing yourself,

and giving yourself in love?


Perhaps your next name,

who knows what that will be,

could it be one written on a white stone?




“I want to do what will make you proud of me,” I say to her.
“Of course I’m proud of you” she says.
“I know, you have to say that” I say
You are my mother.
I am proud.

“But I mean to do the things that you love and care about, to really let you know how I love you.”
I do love you. And I love you.
But you don’t need to prove it.
“To seal it then. And prove it to myself.”
“You just are, and you are enough.”
But I am alone. With nothing to prove now what am I?
I don’t know what you are.  But you are enough.



The Tremor

I felt a tremor today

in my heart.

I barely took notice,

as I did my daily work.

But I sensed a larger problem deep within,

a tremendous shaking on the other side of my soul,

foretelling a tsunami of sorrow rising.


I wished I could be someone else today,

writing something different;

something funny, and witty,

with a surprising and ironic twist at the end.

Not soft and emotionally raw,

from the heart and uncomfortable to read.


Spillanes are supposed to write crime novels,

not poems about feelings.

The main character is supposed to be tough and cool;

dames with slender legs dangling off the corner of his desk.

Not a man with a girl’s name, writing about his broken heart;

treacly, sentimental and soft.


Life presents us with reality and it isn’t what it is supposed to be.

I don’t get to be the detective with the fedora and raincoat.

Still, maybe I can uncover the missing emotion,

and help someone find a long lost love

hidden within them, by way of example.



Stair Dweller

I saw a man on a stairwell today.
Sitting on the floor.
I passed him quickly on my way.
A glance and nothing more.

His image though now haunts me.
A working man not free.
A man like me, living on these stairs.
Diligent yet in despair.

This is the world we’ve made for him.
Homes and bread for profit.
Where prices rise and futures dim.
Life lived out of pocket.

He smiled at me and cracked a joke.
His spirit still unbroke.
I realized then though life is tough.
Strong wills can be enough.
And while the world can seem unfair.
If each can just forbear.
We’ll find some peace and joy just like
the dweller on the stair.