Thursday, February 22, 2007

Morning at Dawn

Darkness covers the fields;
A chill fills the spring air.
Without the sun’s life-giving light,
The pastures of green are hidden from sight.

A persistent breeze breaks the pre-dawn silence,
And the grasses waver in the wind
As though massive waves in a sea.
Back and forth the grasses bend as the dawn light appears.

Dark clouds form from the south
As the coming of the morning sun is marked.
The menacing maelstrom quickly moves
With thunder and lightning and wind now howling.

All grows dark as the clouds extinguish all light,
And the threatening skies, now black, open up.
The rain pours down at a quickening pace,
And the deluge begins, showing no end.

Amid the maelstrom is a lone tree,
Resting high atop one of the rolling hills.
Its branches, flailing amid the wind and rain,
Act as a shelter from the thickening tempest.

Lightning strikes the solitary tree,
Frightening a group of songbirds from their alcove.
Thunder crackles as the tree is struck,
But amid the downpour the wood fails to ignite.

As quickly as the thunderstorm arrives,
Its remnants race away to the north, now at a distance.
The quiet of morning returns again,
And light from the morning sun shines brightly.

To the east the orange light casts a glow
On the peaceful pasture with quiet serenity.
So too the songbirds return to their tree;
Their chirps intermingle with the subsiding flow of rainwater.

The sweet symphony of nature’s harmony,
The birds’ chirping songs of morning
And the peaceful gushing of life-giving rain,
Pay tribute to the intricate beauty of God’s creation:
This beginning of a life-giving and blessed day.

Thursday, February 15, 2007

The Garden

So yesterday I posted my second poem written last week. Today's poem I wrote Monday of last week. It was a monumental day for me in that I am grappling some deep feelings within my heart and—to a lesser extent—also here out in the blogosphere. I have been doing this for months now since last October which was accentuated with the writing of The Window. The Monday before last was a very busy day, a meeting to sort these feelings out, the first speech for my Speech Comm. class, and then other classes afterward.

After this first discussion, I felt a great deal of relief to start to put these feelings to rest, to move on from feelings first felt and emotions that I haven't had in years. So much so it moved me again to reflect on what had been welling beneath the surface. The fact of the matter is that one cannot leave feelings alone to fester because if it does those initial feelings start to morph from their innocent beginnings to something altogether different...and not always in a good way.

These past months have been something altogether different and something so great, but at the same time there's something that's been amiss. Below is the poem I wrote to close these feelings I've had within me. Like a caged dove, I'm letting it go...slowly.

It is a pain not to let my feelings for her come fully out in the open. Something inside of me yearns to let them flower in the open. However, I am not that kind of person. It's not me to want to draw attention of that nature out into the open.

All that my feelings are capable now of doing are endangering something that I have prayed over and know in my heart is right. These words might speak of a lack of self-esteem, but it isn't that in actuality. It is the acceptance of the fact that I should not break the trust of a friendship...even if it it's to the detriment of my own self esteem.

What a mess have I've gotten my heart into, and somehow God will work this out in His own time, I know. It's patience that I need for His Will to be fulfilled. These thoughts are what I attempted to capture in words. I would even venture to call it a prayer in my search for "the Other" and to close the book on these feelings.

The Garden

A grove of oaks
Stands stoic amid a field.
Its isolation is stark, like an island,
And its surrounding grassland extends
As far as the eye can see.

At the center of the grove,
Resting safely beneath the trees
Is a lush garden of roses,
And a canopy broad and comforting
Shelters the garden beneath.

The soothing spring sunlight
Shines softly through;
Its light is a nourishing gift from above.
The soft smell of roses,
Sweet and intoxicating, wafts to the heights above.

This garden’s soil is fresh;
Its soft, moist earth is sweet in smell.
Bountiful is this blessed earth,
And all the plants set firm in this soil
Are fruitful and blessed.

At the heart of this garden
Is a rose bush, with its blossoms
A deep alluring red in full bloom
And its delicate leaves verdant,
Full of life and of hope.

But at its base, a weed springs forth.
Its stature is small and its blossom insignificant.
The plant is a mistake, its existence here out of place.
Still, it exists out of love from the Maker.

It is a meager dandelion, with blossom golden bright.
Yet the dandelion is still out of place,
With all the blooming roses
That triumphantly soar in the towering heights.

It clings to the rose bush’s base like a vine
And chokes from it its life and beauty,
So enchanting, mystifying and divine,
For it is blind to the splendor the world sees.

For the roses are love,
And the dandelion is mere attraction.
Its stunted growth is a mere shadow
Compared to the fullness of life that is above.

And so the Gardener enters the sanctified grove,
Treading carefully to its very center.
A mighty breeze blows through the grove,
And the dandelion quivers violently amid the wind.

Humbled, the dandelion releases its fortified grip
From the rose bush’s tortured base,
And the Gardner approaches it
Quietly with loving care and grace.

He knows of the dandelion’s intentions,
Of its loving desire for embrace,
For He remembers all His plants,
Whatever stage in life they may be.

He forgets not His plans for each of them,
Especially the solitary dandelion
Which He takes into His hands
And brings to another fertile land
To let blossom for all the world to see.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Meaning of Love

Surprisingly, February is half way over. You needn't worry, I've been pondering many things, especially love. I actually did quite a bit of poetry writing last week, when I was full of energy. This week I've been a bit more lethargic and a little on the cranky side. So I suppose the single life does have its pluses from time to time.

Ah, but this isn't what I'm here to post on today. Even though it is a little out of turn in what were my thoughts, it is fitting to write specifically on love this day, St. Valentine's Day. I won't go on about how I feel right now or my general ambivalence (even joy of having no pressure this day). These things, however pleasing to the masses matter little much right now. They are mere picayune items to be incessantly fretted upon. C'est la vie!

What is of importance is the everyday love, and the form that this love takes place matters not. For all four forms (affection, friendship, eros, and charity) are present in a day. It matters to not exclude love all the other days. Additionally, let's not forget that it's God that is Love, not Love that is God. Often the romanticism of the Victorian Era (which we get a lot of our views on the perfect romance....but unsurprisingly not our sexuality) would place love before God which is an error in logic and is a blasphemy.

So please read my words below, and have a fun-filled loving day today with whoever your sweetheart is.

The Meaning of Love

What is the meaning of Love,
That emotion so mystifying?
Is it a gift from one person to another
Or a mystery of Grace from above?

Like morning dew on a blade of grass,
In time human love comes to pass.
Who are we to claim these gifts our own,
We whom have been given what we have not sown?

Love in its pure form is not human in form,
Since human love is not unlike a storm,
Where the rain clouds quickly build
Until they are pushed away by a greater force and thus yield.

The meaning of Love is this:
Give of your heart until it hurts
Then give of it ten times more.
Love is to trust even when things get worse;
Only then can you find what the Lord has in store.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

To My Generation

A couple weekends ago, I went to Austin with a group of friends for the state pro-life march. The twenty or so of us had a pleasant time traveling to and even being there in the capital, but the reason for the trip brought us little joy or happiness.

The fact of the matter is that in this nation since the Roe vs. Wade decision in 1973, over 47 million babies have been murdered, aborted, or any other euphemism used to describe the killing that has been committed. The simple irreverence that is shown to the matter, or worse yet disdain for the topic being brought up as "controversial," is more appalling.

The frustration of such a lack of respect for life, in all its stages is a serious problem. My parents' generation, those who grew up in that time of "free love" and all that was the 1960's and 1970's, failed morally. Not only did that generation give us a warped sense of morality, but they condoned something so inherently wrong—the killing of innocent life.

The trip to Austin two weekends ago was some light amid all the darkness. And it specifically had to do with my generation and our stand for life in all its stages. The fellowship we had and the camaraderie in being able to attend the yearly Pro-Life Mass at San Jose in Austin, then the Pro-Life Rally and March at the steps of the Capitol, and then the reception at the UT Catholic Student Center was a blessing for me.

But more than that was the homily I heard the next morning at our 11 AM Mass at St. Mary's. Father Brian, in his usual way set out in a clear manner the ills of what our nation has faced and what has caused this evil to seep into our society's heart. He outlined the three major ideological culprits: individualism, relativism, and utilitarianism. While I wish I could reconstruct verbatim the words of the homily a week and a half ago, I am not that skilled in memorization, so I will have to give you the cliff notes version.

Essentially put, individualism is "love without sacrifice," relativism is "love without truth," and utilitarianism is love without humanity. With any one of the three, we are apt to err in judgment. For if we look at everything told to us with the same weight as being equal, how are we to know anything as true? Or, with individualism, if we always think of ourselves, how are we to help our fellow man (and woman)? And especially with the final one, utilitarianism, if we to look at everything in this world saying, "What's in it for me,” how are we to be truly helpful?

The homily did strike a chord in me, and it got me to think a great deal. Additionally, it made me contemplate the weekend, and what more I ought to do to help end the killing. Meanwhile, that evening I began to write again, and even though I didn't set out to write specifically to the topic of abortion, the words fell into place. So these are those words, my words to my generation:

To My Generation

By moonlight do I write
These words of the night,
Of joyous, wondrous might,
And of blessings bestowed by the Way, Truth, and Life.

It is not without sorrow
Nor sadness, nor pain
That I write of a better tomorrow,
Of one not so vain.

Our society kills with indiscretion
The young, the old, and the vile
But the saddest thing is they call it a decision
And they do so with a smile.

What our world now needs
Is a nation and a generation
To sow all new seeds
By calling this killing what it truly is, an abomination.

For if we do not awaken from boredom
The hearts and the minds of this country,
Our proud mantle of justice and freedom
Will fall from its God-given glory.

What else then must we do,
We whom they call the next Great Generation,
Than to cast out the evil and make all things anew?
This is my cry and lamentation.

We who are a people built on principle
Ought not stand by so idly
And allow this atrocity so indefensible.
Instead we should be on the front lines fighting mightily.

Without question, there is a battle to be fought,
One not of actual battle lines,
Rather of clinics where murder is sought.
This is what we fight for: our people’s hearts and minds.

We must change what was lost,
That self-centered failure of our parents' fallen generation.
This is a battle we must win no matter the cost,
For if we do not, ours may be the last generation,
A generation who refused to pay the absolute cost.

So to my generation, do I send this plea:
Awaken from your slumber and change this cruel world that I see.