Song of the South: At Water’s Edge

destin fl beachHaving just had the joy of going to the Gulf coast of Florida to celebrate memorial day with good friends and their children, who are my god-children, I have the ocean on my mind.  So please, bear with me as I interrupt our regularly scheduled daily devotional, with a poem from years ago about both memories of the beach as a child and also about the experience of mindfulness on the changing nature of life.

Hope it blesses you!

Your progressive redneck preacher,



At Water’s Edge

beach florids

Waves of what will yet be

lap against my feet

salty with uncertainties

that slide beneath me,

dragging that steady pull of what has been,

the once firm ground beneath me

pulled gritty and course like so much sand between my toes

into cresting waves of seeming oblivion

while my ankles cool refreshed by crisp blue green waters of possibilities

washing around me in pools

which circle me like the embracing arms of my grandmother

whose wizened hands once led me,

her wrinkled grip holding my tiny finger

walking me down unknown paths

that, old to her, were ever-knew to me.


waves beach

She weaved her tales of what had been

into a patchwork quilt of meaning

which I not only wrap tight around me

as I face the wintry chills of night

but hoist above

a tattered blanket of multi-colored hope turned sail

upon which I can catch new winds

at this shore from where past and future meet.



I remember, on roaring Georgia beach

hand in hand with my freckle faced baby sister in red pigtails

jumping in and out of such puddles with a splash

as are formed with each meeting of sea and sand,

uncertain ocean of possibilities and firm ground of memory, history, and experience.

and discovering with her surprises and wonder within

of fish swimming in those tiny oceans

of fiddler crabs in their quiet dance

seashells glistening in the sun

each waiting to be found

like Blackbeard’s hidden treasure.



Fear and uncertainty sliding with sand into the ocean

I lift my eyes hopeful, in search of what wonders

now wait to be found.




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