Screw the Talk

I don’t wanna cry no more
I wanna shout
I’m more pissed off
than I am much put out
fighting for what does not give
while sons and daughters cease to live
screw the talk
and your righteous disregard
babies runnin’ free and easy
without hope
daddies praying while they’re
clinging to their rope
but we live strong and ever free
they are them and never we
screw the talk
and the condescending scorn
fear is rising all around
and all about
people huddle closer in
push strangers out
disconnection is their answer
but worry keeps on like a cancer
screw the talk
and the words that sow discord

Stand Up

He said, “Stand up”

After knocking him down

“Boy look me in the eye”

Afraid to make any sound

He knew better than to cry

“You best respect me

And be grateful too

For all I’ve ever done”

The hollow words echoed

In the ears of a beaten son

He watched as siblings

Found their way

With the help of a doting dad

And yet he knew

The times would come

He’d feel the wrath of things gone bad

He then grew into his own one day

And he caught his father’s fist

The anger swelled and broadened

But dad was too weak to resist

The boy now man

Struck a blow

To the man at whose table he sat

The father staggered

And shouted out

“I raised you better than that”

The boy now man

Stood his ground

And said, “You’re reaping what you sowed

You raised me up in fearfulness

But I’d like us to live in hope”

But the father pushed back

And hated this son

For what he showed him to be

He refused to listen

And find a way

For both to live strong and free

The family bonds were fraying

For lack of empathy’s ear

And on bended knee the son would dream

Of a life free of struggle and fear

Shame

Why must I bear the shame
Of your hatred and your pride
From birth I share your gender
By DNA my skin is white
But that's the reach of our connection
For you act with such disdain
And yet I live the stigma
Of your torch-lit claim to fame
My answer is to be among
The men whose skin is white
Yet seek to bring the heart of God
To your insipid evil fight
May I be so bold to offer up
The life I think I need to live
And may I find the courage
To regret I have but one to give

Rally Cry

Justice without righteousness
Prosperity over grace
Freedom far too messy
Far too caustic for my taste
Many will rejoice tonight
And rightful toast the day
For freedom is our hallmark
Even as the bindings fray
I pray we’ll find a future
That allows for hope and peace
Guide us on O Great Jehovah
May our angst and strain decrease
Give us love for those who differ
Give us willing ears to hear
Let us not succumb to madness
Let us not live out our fears
For those who follow Jesus
Let us die this day to we
Let us fully give the life we have
So others might be free

Across Town

In the house across town
They sleep uneasy
Love abounds
But food is hard to find
Every day is a struggle
Every dollar is hard won
One step forward
Two steps back and far behind
No complaint makes its way
To the timelines
Never fussing about things
They wish could be
In the homes where life
Is lived abundant
There’s no clue
Of a neighbor barely free

Fires of Fear

Our eyes sting 
From the smoke
Billowing 
From the fires of fear
Stoked by the fuels
Of intention
And injustice
We cannot escape
The acrid vapor
It follows 
As we move
CoverIng our faces
Turning our backs
Helps
Only for a moment
The smog of foreboding
Hangs still
All around

We need a fresh wind
Fight fire with fire
The rush of the Spirit
And the clean burning flames
Of Pentecost
Will let us breathe
Freely
Joyfully
Peacefully
Together
Come Holy Spirit
Use your Church
To clear the air

Lines

What keeps us apart
But our own constructed lines
Construed divisions
Lines painted on the road
No law is written
Yet we stay in our lanes
Never crossing
Never seeing
What life looks like
Over there
We are the makers
And thereby the erasers
Of such imaginary lines
Changing lanes
Sharing the path
Is but a choice
An invitation
A willingness
To travel another’s road
Yet
Like towering barriers
The lines hold
We drive on
Moving the same direction
Yet safely in our space
When will we change lanes
Or better yet
Turn highways
Into wide walkways
Where we meander
Together
Without the lines

Anthem of Grace

There is reason to try
And a purpose to work for
As the world all around us
Needs what you bring
For within you is more
Than you might imagine
Artwork to admire
A song we all sing
Together we form
A mosaic of marvel
Together we make
An anthem of grace
Weaving the notes
And painting the pictures
Each one offers something
Each one has a place

Focus on Kindness

I see goodness all around us
Too often lost in a selfish sea
Yet love and hope are dancing
In a people living free
Don’t lose the sun behind a cloud
Of cruelty and of hate
The good of God is with us
The darkness ’round us will abate
Look to see the beauty
Of a hand held out in love
Focus on the kindness
Flowing from the heart of God
We are tempted to lose confidence 
In the heart of those not us
But there’s righteousness and blessing
Found in others quite enough

If Others Followed

Where would they go 
if they followed you?
What would they hear?
What would they see?
Would it be worth their time?
Would it add to their life?
Where would they go
if they followed you?
Would others be glad?
Would it better the world?
Would hope be renewed?
Would love be made real?
Where would they go
If they followed you?