17 years

September 11, 2018

Seventeen years since the towers fell,
that false-flag crime designed in hell.
Seventeen years of lies and wars
abetted by paid media whores.
Seven nations, one by one,
must see the barrel of our gun
and all because we claim to be
defending peace and liberty.
America has grown of late
into a vast surveillance state
and the pretext for it all
is a lie about the towers’ fall.

Remember 9/11! — Yes
(that common signal of distress),
but first remember to discern
how buildings fall when fires burn,
whether the force of gravity
alone has the ability
to turn to powder beams of steel
which disappear like things unreal
or whether also Building 7
(which felt no plane collide from heaven)
would fall at a predicted hour
without connivance of state power
and do so at a free-fall rate
as though it had no mass or weight.

Now those who bring these things to light
become the object of the spite
of all the official lying crowd
that try to dictate what’s allowed
to be expressed within the state
and with fine words conceal their hate.
The one thing they cannot forgive
is what explodes their narrative,
men like Assange and Snowden who
make known what governments actually do.

The lesson, if we’d care to see
is the loss of sovereignty.
America, for all its flaws,
once had a polity based in laws;
once was a true democracy
which balanced law with liberty.
More than the victims’ lives were lost
when glass and concrete turned to dust.
More than the towers went up in smoke.
Our constitution became broke.
Isn’t it time that we awoke?

How to Speak About God

July 21, 2018

In images we speak of God correctly
Because some things cannot be said directly.
How can a Name unspeakable be said
Without it rendering the speaker dead
At least as to the intellect and heart
Which, by one’s arrogance, are torn apart?
In images we speak of God with care
In hopes to find our truth and meaning there
In what we cannot otherwise proclaim
And, in so doing, glorify His Name.
Because our human intellect is such
That it transforms whatever it may touch
Into a kind of idol: which to break
God breathes in us, a truer mind to make.

Poem on Moses

March 13, 2018

My seventh-grade Old Testament class reached the end of the Pentateuch today, after several hard weeks of slogging through the Sinai desert. Some while ago, one of the students observed that, instead of drawing pictures (which is what I let the students do when their attention spans wane, which happens not infrequently), we should write songs on selected Old Testament themes. I approved of the suggestion, and proposed that, for extra credit, they each write a poem on Moses; I did not anticipate that what some of them would come up with would be rap songs. Below is my own contribution to the class project.

When Moses through the wilderness
the people once did lead
with manna fallen from the sky
their hungry frames he’d feed
thus teaching them that man does not
survive on bread alone
but by each word that comes from God
we feed our flesh and bone

But stiff-necked were the people and
his guidance they did spurn
and for Egyptian flesh-pots they
incessantly did yearn
So God sent them such flocks of quails
that meat dripped from their noses
and thousands died of sickness there
as sacred writ discloses

Then Dathan and Abiram raised
their heels in dire revolt
and from the rule of Moses
they encouraged men to bolt
but God procured a remedy:
beneath their sullied feet
a sudden chasm opened wide
wherein they death did meet

So we also, if we complain
about God’s laws and ways
shall find ourselves in gloomy pit
of hell one of these days
But whereas we a Savior have
who shows us life and light
let us our whole hearts turn to him
and learn to do what’s right

Deir ez-Zor

September 7, 2017

The Empire and its minions tried to push their weight around.
They had their mercenaries and advisers on the ground.
They thought that they would win this way their dirty proxy war,
But it all was brought to nothing by the men of Deir ez-Zor.

The fog of propaganda from the media machine
Keeps telling people not to trust what their own eyes have seen.
It calls “fake news” whatever facts its narrative won’t bear
And mesmerizes millions with an empty Russian scare.

But I’ll thank God for Putin and his fighting Russian jets
That bombed the hordes of ISIS down to hell with no regrets,
And thank God for Bashar Assad, and for the SAA,
And the suffering Syrian people who have longed to see this day.

The wheel of God grinds slowly, but it grinds exceeding small.
The evil that men do rebounds and hastens their own fall.
Now the warmongers in Washington are feeling mighty sore:
They’ve had their asses walloped by the men of Deir ez-Zor.

Queasy fear

January 12, 2013

A queasy fear I sometimes feel
arising in my gullet
from auditory memory
of some demonic trumpet

And sometimes I have had
to sit awhile and catch my breath
when sounds recall the leaden chord
of the angel of death

It’s not so often that I hear
these inward echoings
but when I do, they help me to
remember the last things

Death, and judgment, heaven and hell
(to cite the ancient number)
when seven seals send thunderous peals
and souls awake from slumber

An attempt to write something in French. No doubt I have made grammatical mistakes; I ask the readers’ pardon in advance.

Comme tu es source de tous nos biens,
O Dieu, dévotement je t’en pris,
Guéri nos âmes, et nous accorde
D’être enfants de ta famille.

Puis-ce que la chair est lourde, Seigneur,
Et contre l’esprit suscite la guerre,
Arrêt ses motions absurdes
Et donne la paix dedans le coeur.

Justement, à cause de nos péchés,
Nous connaissons des maux funestes;
Tourne nos yeux à ton visage;
Puis nous sentions l’espoir celeste.

Et puis-ce que ton Fils a tel souffert,
O Dieu, à cause de notre salut,
Applique ces dons à notre égard;
Seigneur, aie pitié de nous.

Christ is risen!

April 24, 2011

Christ is risen from the dead:
This is the primal faith
that overcomes a fallen world
immersed in ways of death.

This is the song the angels sang
when, standing at the tomb,
they saw an uncreated light
pierce through the heavy gloom.

This is what the apostles sang
when through the world they sped
attesting to the one they knew:
Christ risen from the dead.

This song is what the martyrs sang
when, hauled before the thrones
of princes, sultans, emperors,
they risked their lives and bones.

And, through all generations,
the Church has sung this hymn,
proclaiming Christ the king of kings
and triumphing in him.

Christ is risen! and the hosts
of demons quake with fear
to see within their gloomy realm
the lord of life appear.

Christ is risen, and has given
death a deadly blow,
and life and light have come to those
who languished deep below.

Christ is risen! sin and death
have lost their sovereignty,
for Christ the everlasting lord
has won the victory.

Christ is risen! grace and truth
to us are freely given,
for Christ has made a way for all
into the realm of heaven.

Christ is risen! let not fear
oppress us any more,
for Christ destroyed sin’s ancient curse
and settled that old score.

Christ is risen! may our tongues
with joy proclaim his name,
and may the countless hosts of heaven
echo with the same.

For Christ has risen from the dead
and trampled death by death,
and all who slumber in the tombs
shall waken at his breath.