Spirit Questions (a Rubáiyát)

I wrote this a few years ago for the d’Verse Poets Pub. I thought it would be good to reflect on as we exit 2020 and enter 2021. We have lost a multitude of people this year to Covid-19. Death has a way of bringing things into focus. It brings us face to face with our own mortality. The thoughts in this poem reflect on spirit within each of us.

Where dwells the spirit before life begins         

Waiting to entwine with genes at man’s whims

Does it float in space riding red stardust

Or in ocean waves where the raindrops swim

*

Where dwells the spirit when I took my first

Breath of life // of heart and lungs merged thirst    

Spirit seems at home in this flesh and bone

Fragile body // heart pumping till it bursts

*

Where does my spirit dwell when life is done   

As eyes close in death and the race is run

Breath leaves the body and the spirit rises

Rejoining spirit with Spirit // lives on

******

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

The Tree of Life

Today I am sharing a poem from a dear friend, Ike Glick, who lives in Edmonton, Alberta. He sent this poem with his Christmas Letter, and I thought it was very creative and well written. The word Sophia is a feminine name which means wisdom. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did.

The Tree of Life

Sophia *

‘God’s wisdom’

The essence of Being

Even before creation, “I Am”

On the heights” for life perspective

Along the way” in unexpected places

Confronting, “On the path I take my stand

I may be found outside the gates of power

I am ubiquitous

I am available

I am optional

Most free are they who choose my ways

“Those who find me find Life.

As they follow the star . . . *

Echoes of Prov.8, Mt.2, Luke.2 Isaac Glick 12/2020

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Christmas is Love

Some may say Christmas is just a myth

Like the Easter Bunny and Santa Clause

A fantasy created to make us feel good

But to me Christmas is Love

*

You may want to debate the details

Or argue whether the Wise Men were three

Or just three in a caravan of twenty-three

Bringing gifts to the Christ child so long ago

But to me Christmas is Love

*

Some may wonder at the story of the Shepherds

Of Angels singing from on high in the night sky

Perhaps the baby was in their stable asleep in the hay

A tiny baby with a story to tell that changed the world

To me Christmas is Love

*

God coming in the flesh is a concept some might doubt

The Word,,, The Spirit of the living God embodied in a baby

A child said to be both human and divine is quite a wonder

Leaving skeptics to doubt and critics to pick it apart

But to me Christmas is Love

*

You see, God is Love, his love shown through the man Jesus

If you get lost in the details you miss the story, for the story is Love

What ever you believe about the Christmas story most will agree

That Love is the foundation of Christmas… God’s love shown to mankind

To me Christmas is God’s Love and Grace to those who need it most

*

Painting “Piercing the Darkness” – Dwight L. Roth

Christmas Grace

This week I am going to post some or my Christmas poems from past years…

Christmas Grace

What do you want for Christmas she asked?

A chemistry set would be a real blast

When Christmas came, this angel of grace

Was at our door with every gift in place

*

We were just poor preacher’s kids, our die was cast

Waiting for Christmas was always a great task

But we knew our selected gift of choice

Would make us shout from the top of our voice

*

What do you want for Christmas this year?

She would get it no need to fear

Just a hammer of my very own

Would make my day when you come to my home

*

Money was scarce and gifts were few

But, at our house we always knew

That no matter what the circumstance

We need not worry about chance

*

What do you want for Christmas this time?

A Louisville slugger would suit me just fine

Then I could be like Henry and Donn

A bat of my own yes, that’s the one

*

Ruth and Edgar were one of a kind

No children of their own they did not mind

Bringing smiles and joy to their preacher’s kids

And that helmet they brought me surely did

*

What do you want for Christmas, she asked?

She never let a Christmas pass

Every year until I left home

My gift of choice would become my own

*

I will never forget that act of grace

And the joy and smiles she brought to my face

I learned of God’s love and his saving grace

And his only son Jesus who took my place

*

And now each Christmas I hear that voice

“What do you want for Christmas, it is your choice?”

There is nothing I need that will bring me more joy

Than the gift of God’s Grace to a little boy

*

(Written as a tribute to Ruth and Edgar Honsaker,

who made our Christmases a little brighter when I was a child)

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

At the End of the Road…

What is you concept of God and heaven? A couple of years ago, I reflected on the concept of God that I was taught as a child; what the Bible taught us about God, and now, in my winter of life, what I think about those images and concepts. I saw this sign along the road a few years ago. This poem addresses more questions than answers. What do you visualize when you think of God?

At the end of the road when my life is done

what will I find will there be one…

who will meet me there at the pearly gates

with hands outstretched  no need to wait?

Will he be tall, short, fat, or thin;

When he sees me will he break out with a grin?

*

Interesting to me how we fantasize

seeing God like us, as we rationalize…

Dreaming that descriptions of hands and face

describe a reality that has no race.

Metaphors become reality as we describe our God,

forgetting he is Spirit, and that would be odd;

For a Spirit has no shape, no hands to hold tight

Only a presence of the purest light.

*

So whether God is he she or it,

the God we meet will probably not fit

the idea we have in the back of our mind.

Won’t it be interesting what we will find

…at the end of the road?

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

The God Perspective

“You know,” he mused, “Some folks don’t believe there is a God. They get all tangled up with religion and theological arguments about who is right and who is wrong, and miss the bigger picture.”

Grandpa always did have a unique perspective on life. He was wise beyond his years, but only shared his wisdom if asked.

“Aren’t your afraid of catching Covid and dying,” I asked?

“You know son, there are a lot worse things in living than in dying. Death is knocking on all of our doors!”

“I believe there is a God who is the source of all life, and that my life will continue on long after this old pain-ridden body is gone.”

I thought about what he said, as he continued, ‘We look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time’.

“God’s Love is eternal!”

***********

Painting By Dwight L. Roth

Today at d’Verse, Kim is having us do Prosery. This is when we write a prose piece of flash fiction (144 words) that includes a random line form a poem she chooses for us. She gave us this line from the D. H. Lawerence poem, Hummingbird:We look at him through the wrong end of the long telescope of Time’. I decided to write my piece as a conversation.

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Waiting Spaces

New Book Reveal

While searching for answers.

Staying in places of rest and growth, or unsure of where to call home.

Waiting Spaces explores the feelings of waiting through poetical thought and spoken word. 

Each poem is written as a letter to those who are in their own spaces of waiting.

 Perhaps you will find one written to you. 

*****

Above is the tag line from Waiting Spaces by Acacia Mitchell of thoughtsfromatree.com blog . She has written a new book of poetry is now on amazon. com

You can find it on Amazon Kindle at the site below:

http://mybook.to/WaitingSpaces

Acacia asked me to review her book and share my thoughts with you. I enjoyed her poems, especially a few in the middle that dealt with Grace and understanding who we are as God’s children…. letting go, and creating space in our lives. This is very important in understanding how God’s love for us carries us forward, in spite of the cracks in our sidewalk! Acacia’s form of writing seems to flows from a stream of consciousness and is not chopped up in thought. I believe you will find her book interesting and helpful as you face your own waiting spaces, especially in this time of Covid-19. ~ Dwight L. Roth

Almost Heaven

Dusty Sunset - Gary Smucker

An interesting phenomenon occurred this week, when a huge cloud of dust from the Sahara Desert in Africa was carried across the Atlantic. Some of the dust entered our atmosphere here in the US and is creating wonderful sunsets as the light reflects off the dust particles. This gorgeous photo was taken yesterday, and posted on Facebook by a friend who lives in Lost River West Virginia. It immediately reminded me of John Denver’s song Almost Heaven West Virginia. He graciously allowed me to use it in my post today.
West Virginia shines in all its glory.
Dusty copper sky glows brilliantly
in evening light above shadowed mountains…
outlining ridges with purple hues;
Dripping a spot of gold on the lake below.
                                                          *
Almost Heaven, West Virginia…” John Denver sang,
dreaming of a place where God paints the sky.
Brushing with broad strokes across a Sahara canvas…
he once again creates beauty and grace from the dust of the earth;
Leaving us all standing in awe and adoration.

Photo: Gary Smucker (c)  – Used by Permission

Listen to his song here:

Found Poetry

IMG_1958 (2)

Today we were asked to write poetry from our book shelf. Bjorn, at d’Verse, called it found poetry. The challenge is to arrange and make a poem using book titles from our shelf, without changing any titles. I thought these were a very fitting group for the times we are experiencing. See what you think?

Found Poetry

Violence

Money, Sex, and Power

The Brilliant Idiot

Dialogue with death

**

The pilgrim’s progress

The Shack

The light on the hill

What’s so amazing about grace

Streams of living water

Sit, Walk, Stand…

***

Photo: Dwight L. Roth

Join us at: https://dversepoets.com

Feeling Rejected

IMG_5876 (3)
On Good Friday Christians reflect on the death of Christ on the cross, and what his sacrifice means for us. The human side of Jesus suffered unspeakable physical pain. Some say that God will give you strength in your time of need. But it is my experience that when that time comes, it is very difficult to feel that presence. Even Jesus cried out on the cross, wondering why God had forsaken him in his darkest hour. Pain and rejection seem to be Siamese Twins! It is very hard to have your whole world collapse and not feel rejected. This is why it is so important to have persons who will walk with you and help you regain your perspective once more, understanding that God loves you even when you don’t feel it.

Dark night of the soul
Feelings rejection’s pain
Forsaken // alone
Stretched out on life’s cruel cross
Has God turned his face from us?
In His pain he cried
“My God, my God, why have
you forsaken me!?”
Feeling rejection’s pain
In that dark night of the soul

*****

Painting: Dwight L. Roth