Weekly poem on Trump Presidency


Love Is The Litmus Test


My daughter, Hannah, knows me,
and now, well, with the years,
helps raise me.

After seeing on Facebook that
my cousin Greg marks himself safe
during The Hazmat Incident
in Batesville, MS, USA,
I call her to note how he
has driven his rig “Big Red”
for Coca Cola over thirty years.
I hear myself say, “This world of ours . . .”

She says she would
be very concerned
if I returned to my cave. Very.

Once, I was doing what pastors do in a church
I would soon leave. As I tried to hold
forth, a faithful friend dickered
with his cell phone, so I called him on it.
He smiled and said, “Hannah and I are texting:
(i) Bruce Springsteen? Check.
(ii) Johnny Cash? Check.
She’s betting your last point will be:
(iii) “Love is the litmus test.”

Don’t worry, Honey, Daddy’s in a loop, sure.
Could be a circle.  Something predictable but not vicious.
Something hard to draw that bears repeating.

On sunny days, whatever shape I’m in lifts, spirals up.
I’m ferried on this updraft until my world, small, sure,
no longer valleys me. And where I land
I am still in the world, Hannah.

I now know where the poets live.
They live alkaline lives, with a PH above 7.
They’ve quit pretending
it’s complicated. It’s not. It’s simple
math, even science, measurable: hate is acidic.

Love is the litmus test.


I'm a retired pastor who now enjoys a kind of "free-range" ministry as a writer, speaker, spiritual director, seminar/retreat leader and pastoral counselor.  Poetry has become a big and vital part of my calling.  I'm a very deliberate reader and writer.  I see poetry as a way of prayer, of paying attention, of listening to what rises up to address me out of silence and solitude.  My hope is to manifest the lived reality of the deep and abiding Mystery of God's Presence, both as darkness and light.  I was raised in the Mississippi Delta of eastern Arkansas, and much of my poetry embodies the voice, themes, and landscape of my upbringing in the small towns of West Helena and Dyess.



illustration:  anna_croc01

illustration: anna_croc01