Mediocre Ogre



Following a long train of thought
throughout these pages of self-erasing
notions- gone if they aren’t spoken
Or ever written down, I have
come to where my
slippery writing no longer
presumes to inspire greatness or
affect empathy, but it knows
now it means, and ceases to
assume it means anything
more than the meandering ramblings
of a Mediocre ogre.

Ablaze

One more of those who seek the light, who reach
To touch the cloth...just a moth
Fluttering in smoky nimbus that christens our wings
In the ashes of those who blazed ahead.
Covered in powder that feels like power but decays like carrion if
We look too long or hard at our dusty companions...
If we don’t fly into the flame.

A New Song

Teach me a new sound, Oh God, 
A new song I need to learn. 

Keep my ears from yearning to be always soothed
by words that are soft and easy to hear.
Save me from being so fond of my own opinions
That I resist a different witness, won't sing a newer song.
Discomfort me, yet protect me from being being so bruised
Or arrogant that I miss your message in my distress.

As long as I still breathe, challenge me. 
Let your witness unmask a better me along my walk toward you.
Remind me that my "good enough" elusion most often truly isn't.
Humble me so I do not demand familiar paths, easy truths,
or pre-approval of the messages I hear.
 
Let me be open to walking a new way,
Hearing a new word,
Learning a new song.  
Amen

Peace Prayer

Oh God,
We pray for peace, yet feel so helpless to bring it about.
Peace in our world, our cities, our homes, and our hearts.
This Christmas season, we pray not only for peace,
but for the power and wisdom to make it happen.
Make us true instruments of your peace,
and let your light shine through us so all people,
like the Wise Men, can find our way to you.
amen

Christmas Hope

Thank you for the hope that comes with the birth of your son. 
Hope that our lives are not limited by the circumstances of our birth,
the politics of our time, the roles that we fill, 
or the expectations of others. 
Hope that our lives can be part of a better story, 
our souls connected to a greater spirit 
than they can be on our own.
Hope that our passing through this world will not go unnoticed, 
and that we will not be irrelevant to your plan to spread love throughout the earth.  
Amen 

Justify Me Not

Oh God, 
Please protect me from being so satisfied with myself that I look meanly on others.   
Give me a learning heart and guard it 
so my opinions are not rigid, self-serving, or damaging.   
Humble me and save me from the need to criticize, 
the fear of being wrong, and 
the arrogance of feeling justified. 
Mold my beliefs not from lofty place, 
but from an understanding nearer-to-the-ground 
and closer-to-your-heart.  
Open my heart to love all of your children, 
and show me more ways to be a blessing. 
Amen

Nighttime Prayer

Oh, Lord, I believe.
Help my unbelief.  
Please breathe on me tonight and keep calling to me
As I walk through my day tomorrow.
Please forgive me when I forget or ignore your voice,
and remind me again and again of my place in your kingdom. 
Put your love in my heart,
Your words on my lips,
Your work in my hands, and
My feet on your path.
I lay the longings of my heart before you, Lord,
and ask that my beloved ones be your beloved,
and that your beloved ones
Forever become mine. 
In your name I pray these things.
Amen.

All We Knew

Once, we knew it and
it was all we knew,
The essence of our essence
Knitting our bones and muscles together
In that place where we were from, and one, and all-in-one.
Yielding to it was the first thing that we did,
And shall be our final act.
However much we twist toward something other,
The Creator’s Breath
Will hold us when all of ours have been exhaled.
As we lean into, and let out that Breath, our very last,
We shall know that we are home.
We shall know again.

Ahead

I saw an old friend last night.
We sat together on the curb
Just outside the place we left our past behind.
We skipped stones toward it, across the rainy pavement,
And strained to see the things we should have seen back then.
But we didn't point them out. We both knew that they were there.
We saw the shoes we’d stashed the last time we passed,
For our return trip... just in case,
But we wouldn’t put them on again - wouldn't even dare.

We turned and went barefoot to a different place.

Dandelions



Once we gave my Nana a daisy-chain of dandelions,
And she tied flowers in our hair with ribbons 
from her grandmothers,
New wisps and old strands entwined.
And we sang in all our grandmothers’ voices,
"Aren’t our granddaughters wise and so joyful!" 
"Aren't our grandsons so loving and kind!”

Once we gave my Mama a bouquet of dandelion tufts,
And she blew wishes in our hair with wisdom
from her grandmothers,
New dreams and old longings combined.
And we sang in all our grandmothers’ voices,
"Aren’t our granddaughters wise and so hopeful!" 
"Aren't our grandsons so generous and kind!”

Once my children gave me a daisy-chain of dandelions,
and I braided wisdom in their hair with stories
from my grandmothers,
New truths and old notions enwoven.
 We gave thanks for all our grandmothers' voices,
And this chain through the years, still unbroken.

More Than

I am more than that small thing I did
And smarter than that dumb thing I said.
I'm wiser than the bad choice I made,
And stronger than the weak me you see.
I am truer than the faithless words that passed my lips,
And I'm braver than the easy path I took.

I was anyway.
Do you remember? Do you recall that me that I was going to become?

Do you remember when I sang a song of easy grace inside my heart
And I offered help with no strings or words attached?
Do you remember when I was so joyful that it made you smile
And I stood up when sitting down was small and mean?
Do you recall when I was so kind that it made you glad
And so loving that you loved me even more?

Oh God, please restore the bigger me.
Because the smaller me is taking all the room.

Policies and Procedures

  • Always stop at lemonade stands 
  • Smile when you make eye contact
  • Hold the door even if it takes a little longer
  • Sing in the shower and in the car
  • Apologize out loud
  • Follow your first instinct to help
  • Go out of your way more often than is convenient
  • Tip more than you should
  • Give anonymously
  • Be the first to laugh at yourself
  • Share without expectations
  • Forgive
  • Compliment on character
  • Thank others for their gifts
  • Indulge your generous impulses

Did You Ever Want a Friend Like You?

Did you ever get tired of people watching everything you did?
Tired of teaching grace 

To people who should have already known?
Tired of forgiving 

People who had failed and would surely fail again?

Did you sometimes want to be smaller
Than you were made to be?
With less expectations
And demands for your attention?
 

Did you ever long to just be one-of-the guys,
and have a friend like you? 

Or wish to be a sidekick,
With a smaller part that might cost less?


I know at least one time when you did.

Could I have been your friend?
Would I have tried to defend you,

absorb a blow, or carry a load for you?
With the force of my will, could I have
Saved your head or back or hands or feet
Or side?

Can I now
When you are publicly lashed because of our self-righteousness,
Mocked because of our weaknesses,
And crucified again because we fail you still?