rebirth redux (a reflection on yesterday morn)


Why was I surprised that the cawing,
the calling
of crows would signal
a Spirit-rebirth of joy and gratitude
after days of sorrowing o’er the world’s ills?

For crows are a symbol,
yes, in some civilizations, of death and grief,
yet, in biblical tradition,

an emissary of God’s sanctification sent forth by…

Noah from the ark to test whether the waters of the Great Flood had receded(1)
God to feed the prophet Elijah amidst a drought in the land(2)

and a beneficiary of God’s benediction(3) of whom Jesus said, “Consider the ravens…”(4)

Yea, tho’ surprised,
quickly I realized
a Franciscan (truly, a pax et bonum)-moment
of heavenly portent
in the cawing,
the calling
of my brother and sister crows;
reminding me
(remanding in the custody of my memory; ne’er again, I pray, to forget)
that, whate’er betide, God is good, always and in all ways.



(1) Genesis 8.6-7

(2) 1 Kings 17.4-6

(3) Psalm 147.9; Job 38.41

(4) Luke 12.24



Subtitle: on the Tuesday morning following a prayer for a breezy, chilly, bluesy Wednesday*

Some mornings…this morning, I feel…I am born again;
not merely by awaking –
tho’ believing that is not promised, not daring idyllic indifference for this grace –
but rather via sensing, believing, trusting in a renewal,
as Jesus saith, “from above”** and
as Paul saith, “inwardly day by day.”***

I sense, believe, trust
for this morning – when the crow cawed, indeed, when the crows cawed,
welcoming the day (as they do every dawn) with their cacophonous chorus –
I heard not (as I usually do!) discordant noise,
but rather a cry, a call to rise, rejoicing in the gift of sound.

And then, grateful for the gift of sight, I looked, watching
the murderous swarm (this day, numbering four)
take flight to alight (as they do every dawn) on the limbs of the black walnut tree –

Black Walnut tree, Clevedale, 11-12-17at this time of year wholly barren of leaf,
appearing as fleshless, arthritic bones
against the grey autumnal sky –

where they, staggered from branch to branch,
stood on stage, a black-robed quartet to continue their cantata,
the whistling breeze their musical accompaniment…

and I inhaled their melody as Spirit-breath.



*A previous blog post, November 8, 2017

** John 3.3.

***2 Corinthians 4.16



a 4th of July epigrammatic poetic meditation

Statue of Liberty

when Martin’s misty dream crosses the as yet insuperable obstruction

from the ethereal theory of virtuous ambition to righteous action,

from the hallowed declaration of a half-century plus four past[1] to the corporeal reality of daily realization,

and character, not color becomes the fairest, truest measure of human perception…


and when gender remains an aspect of human identification,

yet no longer a veiled, vile justification for subjugation…


and when this land’s loathsome chronicle of injuries unto others

(the venal seeds of prejudice yielding the poisoned fruit of injustice) –

because of

color and gender,

race and culture,

lineage Native or immigrant or slave –

is read aloud by public penitent voices within the hearing of a moral heaven,

and, in acknowledging the sin, repenting, promising, “never again!”,


then the American experiment will become the American experience…


then America will “be America again –

The land that never has been yet –

And yet must be – the land where every one is free.”[2]



[1] A reference to the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s speech, I Have A Dream, August 23, 1963

[2] From Let America Be America Again (1935), a poem by Langston Hughes (1902-1967); altered (one substituted for man)

restless ease, a poem


Prologue: I am one, from my time in this world as far back as I can reckon unto this very day, given to untempered and unfettered swings of mood from highest jollity and raucous laughter to nadir-depths of sadness, deep discordant sighs my only song; the shift, sometimes sudden, spurred by life’s griefs, yes, mine own, yet largely those of others, some whom I know, most I do not, for I, provoked, I believe, by the Spirit, embrace – not always willingly, but nonetheless unavoidably – creation’s pain, which clings irremovably to my heart’s hands. As a follower of Jesus, I pray, I trust that in his life and ministry, death and resurrection, he hath broken – and hath made possible the bearing of – the curse of care. In that faith, amid another, the latest of these anguished spells, during the small hours of this morn, the following words were given to me…


In my days, a weighted, unbreakable chain of restless ease

decrying the world’s ceaseless woe,

advancing, retreating to sleepless nights of supplication endless

my mind and heart, soul and spirit tossing hither, then yon,

I lean on the love of Jesus,

the One who lived and died for us

forsaking safety from the storms of human sin

seeking alway to enter in

our very blood and breath,

our pain of flesh,

our experience of life to share;

His heart to care,

His body to bear

the cross of our indignities

that One dare die to set us free.

singing of a stormy Mother

(inspired by Funkadelic’s Maggot Brain, 1971)


Mother Earth bears the dust

on which Thou, O God, dost

breathe to make us,

and She our grounding

on which we, the prayer saying,

“live and move and have our being”,

and o’er which ruach’s fury doth threaten to break us.


For our Mother we pray


in gratitude for life

to Her, at times bereft,

in fear of death.


May we, can we, too, wonder


we had (have?) any part

in weather’s



If we dare consider

any thought of our share

in Her change

in tempest’s temper

might we deem it wise to suffer

our change?

ode to a dreamer/believer

(dedicated to the one i love)


beholding the sky, its cerulean limitlessness,

sky, blue

with a memory miraculous

of something not yet,






in her bones, she knew she was meant to take flight,

to alight


on air…


though wingless,

for the longest

time she stretched, flutterless,


stubbornly earthbound,

her talons sharp and embedded,

inextricably wedded

to the ground,




she dreamed

and deemed


her home, space;

land, an interim place.


one day, as she alway knew,


she sprouted those necessary things,



(was it but a dream, a mocking fantasy

or her new,



never questioning,

ever believing)

bird in flight

and flew.