Songs of the South — Lover’s Lament

I wrote this, wow, 5-6 years ago, as I got asked politely to leave a church because of an outreach to the homeless.  I don’t identify with all the language in the poem now, but I thought it was worth a share.




Lover’s Lament

In agony I scream
as nails pierce bone and flesh.
Yet as in a waking dream
this memory lifts me fresh
to our love pledge so warm:
Salt-soaked and fervent
I rise from watery grave
your voice having went
like ocean brine and wave
roaring over my form.
Hearing your call I leap
naked , helpless, a child.
Bread, fish lie there in heaps
where I fall; my heart wild
beats now as if reborn.
Brilliant body ablaze
you whisper, “Feed my sheep,
dear one, if in all ways
you love me,” as my cheek
is brushed by hands well worn.
Voice cracking, heart shattering
“You know I love you,” I cry,
“you are my heart, my life, my king”
Thrice you ask, thrice my heart dies,
and thrice my soul is torn.
In a moment, our eyes meet.
With words beyond speech we share;
and you plant my weary feet
on the path that led me here
dying hung in scorn.
That moment I gave my pledge
you told me where it would end:
always rushing to the ledge
for the wandering whom you send
who at last hand me here to burn.
Yet your love burns in my breast
and on the tree I ache for them
that they might find your rest.
And I know no passing whim

can compare to your love so warm.


One thought on “Songs of the South — Lover’s Lament

  1. lindadarryl says:

    I am a 65 year old Episcopalian soon to be great grandmother. I want to thank you for your online ministry and express my sorrow for your loss. This post really touched my heart today I stand in awe always when I see the workings of God in painful closing doors and the revelations of new and wonderful new openings. Six years ago my beloved husband never regained consciousness and died ten days after what we thought was to be a simple heart surgery. I spent some time being rather angry at God, but gradually , and with the support of friends, I realized that God was not to blame and I began to once again to allow God to water my life and sprout new seeds of contentment and joy in my life. I will not say I am “over” my husband’s death, I treasure his memory and I still have a good cry once in a while, but it no longer paralyzes me.
    Three years ago my then 86 year old mother was told she could no longer be a voting member at the church she had been a part of for a number of years. Her “sins” were attending church with my brother when out of town visiting him (they are not allowed to go to any mainline church because “they are apostasies”) and secondly, she spoke out when the self ordained pastor revealed his plan to cut the pension of a retired missionary, saying she gets Social Security, so he could hire his son. She said simply that Social Security is not a large amount and that the lady had served faithfully for many years. It took every ounce of my own Christianity to not pay him a visit and give him a piece of my mind when she called me sobbing so hard she could barely speak.. The really neat thing was, an old friend of hers called a few days later and invited her to a church she had attended some years back. She did not miss a Sunday of worship. She became a part of a fellowship that included her beyond the Sunday and Wednesday services. Only one member of the old church continued to speak to her, but that is their loss.
    In your case, it is certainly that old church’s loss because you now have a wonderful ministry with uplifting and spot on messages that I read every day from several states away. I am enjoying reading the older posts, many were from before I found your blog. I pray that God will continue to rain his love on you, nurture you and bring you to new and wonderful things.

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