Saturday, January 1, 2011

Write in my heart! (again)

Happy New Year! It has been a long long time since I last blogged, and yet I feel the pull to begin writing again in 2011. I hope to use my blog again as a place to share my thoughts and have dialogue with friends, which is something I've missed since moving to Oregon and being so consumed with a new life. Please feel free to banter with me.

The recent discussions in Beck's and JGW's blogs on the topic of faith, doubt and authenticity got me thinking about a poem I've been working on, and the
struggles I've had lately with trying to reconcile my discontent with church leaders and feeling a sense of place and happiness at church. Faith is no longer a simple thing for me. Part of me wishes I could go back to the years of complete confidence in and testimony of the 'true and living' church, but I suspect that what I am learning is more valuable to myself and closer to the truth of things as they really are, and not as I want them to be.

Following is a rather edgy poem for me, one that has been trying since the middle of November to get a voice that I am satisfied with. I'm still a little unsettled with it, but have decided to let it rest, publish it, and see what anyone has say. I usually don't talk back to the Lord, but it all started in response to the reading assignment in Jeremiah for the Old Testament Sunday School class. I've not read much of Jeremiah before, except for the sound-bite snippets we usually hear, like in Jeremiah 31 which the poem responds to. But I also found much of his writing, such as is in Jeremiah 16, to be troubling because of his condemnation and anger with the people. Maybe the Lord really did want him to say all the terrible things he said to the Israelites, but I know there are always two sides to a story, and human perspective often tends to be one-sided or bigoted. And so, my poem explores the exasperation we may feel as gay LDS, the feelings of condemnation, the doubt,
the blind leading the blind, the need for acceptance and redemption, and finally the call for attention from a living prophet.

Write in my Heart! (again)

Will you make our land desolate?
I'm no better than my dead father.
So call on my obstinate soul to break,
To turn away the path of destruction.

As yet, your rod of iron rusts.

Do not whisper or sigh softly
If you want me to hear, for crying
Out loud... Only then will I let the
Sound fall flat, the silence speak,

And wait for you.

Allay the pale and trembling fear,
My dread that you are not here
To listen to me. I am open to your
Transcription on my inward parts.

There scrawl your name.

I am, I am, I am hoping you are near.
Did I not feel you present, your hands
On my believing head, a blessing
Urging me to seek, to love, to see?

How then, to stumble in darkness!

Christ, I am falling in your ditch--
And I am not alone, we are legion.
Forgive us, spent and hungry,
With only a cardboard sign saying

“Anything Helps… God Bless!”

But this is our writing, not yours.
All we ask is your signature on
The corrugated line, redeeming us.
Jeremiah, where are you now?


Neal said...

Welcome back! I liked your poem very much. Keep writing...

J G-W said...

Welcome to the "threshold of revelation"! I agree with Neal... Keep writing.

Glad you're back... I look forward to hearing your voice more often in Moho blogland.

mohoguy said...

Thank you for your thoughtful commentary and welcome back. I look forward to getting to know you better. Brad

Anonymous said...

Good to hear from you.

GeckoMan said...

Thanks for visiting my blog.

Here's another note to the poem: lately I've been volunteering at a local church which shelters the homeless during cold weather, and in so doing have become more aware of the needs and stark realities of these brothers and sisters. These are tough times, and I worry they will get even more difficult. However, I rub shoulders with many wonderful people who are practicing the ethic of 'no poor among them.' I am also reminded of King Benjamin's question, "are we not all beggars?" as well as his answer that we have not begged in vain, because he pours out his Spirit upon us (Mosiah 4:19-20). Such has indeed been my experience.