Posts Tagged ‘Faith’

They bow and touch
lips to stone.
Salty soup leaking steam
like smoke from an altar
in the gold star driven nights
over the glowing flames
of an old Russian Monastery.
Backs bent from endless work
like plants toward life
giving light.

A cold wind
blows to prepare the soup
for the tongue. Rippled
monks bend in unison
under the breath of God.
Their lips are silent –
always in silence
because you cannot talk
with your lips against
the stone.
They give their voices to God.

During the day they prepare
the bread they eat at night.
A waterfall of falling grains
ground and broken for a reason.
Men in brown turning the wheel
while singing praise.
Drown the bread in cooling
soup and pop those rain soaked
clouds into mouths worn
from a day of singing and smiling.
They give their voices to God.

Days of singing and working
are useless at the altar
when they bend to meet the ground.
Silence is the only proper
response to awe.
Silence is the only thing
you can do
with lips pressed
against all of God’s creation.
They give their voices to God.

Press her against you,
so she can bend too.
There is a world that kisses
you back my monks.
He created her from the same
ground grains as you.
She bends in the breeze.
She blows on her soup
and on your ear.
She sings, and prays
all day long until night falls
so she can press her lips
against a stone
in silence.
It is not good,
it is not good,
for man to be alone.

So give to her,
give her your voice
and she’ll give it back.
From this dialogue of creation,
the harmony of silence,
comes true wisdom –
the only thing He wants for us,
the rest is violence.

Our voices come from God.

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The last thing she removed from her travel bag
were the tissues she used to wipe my face.
To wipe her face.
Tissues from Austria. Tiny little surrender flags
to quell a flood – a flood older than Noah
and his boat.

And could you imagine the tears he cried
when on solid ground again surrounded by nothing
except the brown dirt of a clean world
In utter humanity.
Like her pupils, the center of her eyes.

She had said it. Something she didn’t realize
somewhere between mundane conversations
like “how’s the weather”. How was she to know?
How was I to tell her? Abraham was silent
on his way up the mountain when he still believed
that his trip back would be alone.

She knew that sons had to be sacrificed. And that time
could not stand still. She knew Jesus had wept.
Even as the sun is still over head
held by the hand of the Lord – time still passes. In hearts,
in minds, in swords, and in history.
So she delicately retrieved the tissues. The rough
recycled toilet paper had felt too much
like thorns on her cheek.

The nature of tears goes all the way back to the garden
before a savior was needed. Long before the juice
of a pomegranate could remove the skin
of an apple. Do you think the snake cried?
Having been nothing but the agent of the Lord
Pushing forward history – so He could have a Son.
So He could lose His Son – perhaps the most human act of all.
As we learned from Abraham.
A father crying the world into a flood.
Faith in silence, silent in faith, tears for tears.

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Previous Entry Found At: http://veritasexlogos.wordpress.com/2008/05/22/stories-told-to-be-forgotten-vii-the-intruder/

The darkness was pierced suddenly by the sliding open of the channel between Clay and the father. Inside the cramped iron maiden the thick dust could be tasted but not seen. Clay let out a choked whispered prayer for forgiveness later rattling on uninterrupted about the plethora of sins both new and previously omitted or more likely forgotten. The father sat in silence out of disbelief or perhaps even shame over his fellow man’s emotionless enumeration of his adventures. When silence finally returned to the chamber the father groaned and pulled from his vocabulary the one word Clay did not expect to hear.


“No I shant have it, your my guest. Well, my father’s guest. Take a seat and I shall fetch the tea.” The foppish man waved his arms hysterically before retrieving his spectacles from his pocket. He seemed old in motion but youthful when still – his dress reflected something of a by-gone era but his angular features and beardless face made it look modern and stylish if not slightly outlandish. He wore a navy blue bowtie and suspenders over a plane white dress shirt. He had draped his sports coat over a antique looking chair before shooting off into the kitchen.

“I think we have some misunderstanding.” Elle pleaded while still standing.

“Nonsense. I see things all too clear. My father, like all men, has given into the nature of our kind and found himself a youthful mistress. For what other reason would you be in his study without a stitch of clothing on.” He paused as he fiddled with the oven. Elle searched for the proper words to say, to come clean, to admit to her sinful night and beg for this strangers forgiveness. But before her heart compelled her to speak, he continued.”


“You cannot be forgiven. What you have done is completely contrary to God’s will and you have done it more than enough times to make a habit of it. Until some way of education can be devised to purge from you the taste for sin I cannot in good conscious forgive your sins.”

“Is it a sin to give into your nature?”

“To be a beast?”

“To be too human?”

“You cling to your beastliness for justification but what of the other side… the higher side?”


“This explains why father was so happy before he died. Even as the Alzheimer’s gripped his mind he kept saying: My soul has ascended. The old man was all doom and gloom ’til that moment. He would shuffle around this house finding solace in antiques and books from exotic places. It was unnatural. A man cannot go that long without a woman’s touch.” Something in the way he spoke brought comfort to Elle. The man wanted his father to be happy, and if that belief kept this man afloat than why bother his bliss with such a trivial matter of detail.

“I’m afraid I didn’t catch your name.”

“Pierce Fletcher. Yours?”

“Elle Scardenelli.”

“A beautiful name, for a beautiful woman.”


“Even Adam, before sin gripped his bones, was undone by a beautiful woman.”

“You quote scripture to suit your purpose, but you throw out the rest. Even the devil can quote scripture for his purpose, Clay.”

“I need this.”

“For what, Clay? To write another one of your trashy novels.”

“With your grace perhaps I can make them more than trash.”

“You’ll have to ask the Lord about that issue. I have a higher side to worry about as well, and it will do nohting but poison my spirit if I forgive you on the grounds you have provided.”

“Then educate me. What is it that I can do to atone?”


“I write novels. Well, sort of. Father said it was always a waste of time, that I would never be like Homer or Shakespeare, so why bother? Unlucky to be born at such a point in history were all understanding of art has lost. It takes a civilization of immense culture to produce such a writer. By we’ll never know if we don’t try, right? I want to write something great, something sweeping, a definition of our time and place.”

“What will it be about?”

“Haven’t really gotten that far yet. I am taking a trip for inspiration.”

“Where to?”

“I know some monks that might take you in.”


“Yes. They live a secluded life up in the mountains. They offer a retreat for spiritual travelers looking to come to the grace of God. I believe one of the brothers there was a writer like yourself. People go to him for teachings on the written word.”

“And if I don’t go. You don’t forgive me.”

“That’s the deal.”

“I suppose the fresh air might do me some good. Where is this place?”


“Kentucky.” The foppish man replied without missing a beat.

“Kentucky?” Elle prodded further.

“The trappists have a monastery down that way.”

“A monastery?” Elle tried to imagine this professorial type in robes.

“A trappist monastery. In New Haven. Its called the Abbey at Gethsemani.”


“You want me to go to a monastery. In Kentucky.”

“Only there will you find salvation.”

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A man with nothing to wear but belief
Crawls, his belly toward hell, over
A street with cobblestone teeth.
Roadside vendors sell their vices
and prayers with stoney answers.
Above them the giant clock tower eye’s
hands are tied with tears
From the ashen faced sky.

Two lovers are the masons of a desire
Killing time, in self defense.
A cold beach and a cricket choir
Call the hourglass sands to dance.
Two opalescent squids trying to make sense
of each other and the dark.

The once proud city built with words by drones
is now nothing but loud concrete and silent windows
peddlers and thier prey, hungry men getting stoned
with happy widows, and the color grey.
Stories are passed like disease and wine
About the day David slew Goliath.

In the library their is a poet with a historian’s delay
with his good, but broken, arm in a sling
and his pen ready like a trebuchet.
He has spent his life waiting, waiting, waiting
for today. He watches the street and
does nothing, nothing, nothing.

He watches the naked man make progress
his open stomach feeding on stone.
The man must be insane, or even hopeless,
drunk, or maybe just alone.
The poet considers weeping for the happy man
Being stripped to his bones,
but such is the sorrow of fairy tales
Not the reality of his home.

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A saint wrapped in only barbed wire fence
proclaiming a scorched earth prophesy
Salvation, a virgin steel’s test,
is the garment of her seduction.

Going forth to feel her brailled softness
Divine revelation, her skin’s theology,
Makes exclamation rhyme with silence,
My hands, her education.

An embrace, God’s recompense
for a failing man’s unity
binds skin to skin, breast to breast
a sacrifice, a reproduction.

Our scars match, God’s word written on flesh
A law, the savior’s love, a covenant refreshed.

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Karmen Zuttra

A kiss that turns away
Tantric prayer
As if it were an eclipsing moon.
The shadows in her eyes stay
Broken by her auburn hair,
a big bang theory’s boon
To remove the God
So visible in her every turn
Or her stare.

A heart to prove sexual theology
the mind to learn how a naked pair,
Venus and Johnny Appleseed,
Decided to fall in love too soon
and how history is just an essay
without a thesis.

She never ceases to amaze,
How such an infinity still has a center
And how a masterpiece can bleed
Through skin so fair.
How her finger tips play
heart strings like a piano
Or how God must move comets
According to a plan.
Her soul knows the count of the dessert sands
she counts them during the nights
When her hands are deep in a prayer
that God might bestow
Enough mercy to make her suffering
Worth the knowing.

It is in her suffering, not her beauty,
that I share
Unity imposed by blind fate.
And it is not by choice, but by duty
that I care
For divinity’s confined state.

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It occurred to me recently
That dreams are for those who can pay the most
Over a bowl of sugared cardboard
And fungal toast
In my sublet apartment
With more rats than ghosts
In the morning the sun hits the trash
And the local man, who smells likes booze
And lives under the over pass
Emerges, and we wait to watch him see his shadow
Because, if he does, then alas
There will be 6 more weeks of winter

Winter is a fresh coat of paint
Except for those who can’t afford clothes
Who pray that perhaps a saint
Or some other wraith with gold
Can revive some distant and faint
Recollections of a life put on hold.
It occurred to me recently
That food doesn’t fill the hungry
It struck me in a dream
While I excavated a dungy
Moss filled basement
Where some prophet had gone to die.


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