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Life

In Thick Darkness, O Lord, Thou Art Ineffable Light -an original poem

I was washed
And when sprinkled, cleansed.
You removed my heart of stone,
And gave to me a clean heart,
O God. In the flood, the gates
Of Paradise were made open for me.
Below the ark, the old man drowned,
And in Your cross was crucified and died.
When the new man rose, you illumined me.
Now, O Lord, I am in darkness.
I have hardened my heart against you.
And no longer have clean hands or a pure heart.
I have turned my heart against my neighbor,
Refusing to meet his needs. So you have
Visited me. My soul thirsted for the waters
Of Your holy city, but my flesh desires the
Nile. So You have made it blood, for I
Refuse to Commune with You.
You have sent to me a great darkness
And in this darkness, I dwell alone,
Unmoving, in silence. This darkness, my
God, I feel. Yet You have revealed the
Hidden and secret things of Your wisdom:
You dwell in thick darkness.

You shall wash me,
And I shall be whiter than snow.
And in the baptism of my tears, I shall
Be cleansed, for every night I flood my bed.
Only the clean of heart shall truly see You,
And ascend Your holy hill. For Noah
Was blameless and ascended to
Your mountain; and Moses at
Rephidim showed us victory in Your cross.
Teach me to wash my garments
And to ascend into the cloud of darkness.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity;
Restore unto me the joy of Your salvation, my health.
You are my helper, for I have set
You before me. Strike the rock
For my sake, and let the earth
Swallow up the Korah of my flesh.
For You have set a table before me.
Transfer me to Your kingdom of light in Goshen,
With the righteous on Your right hand.
Let us wrestle, my God, and let
Me limp. For You have revealed
A great truth: There will be no sun, for
You, O Christ, are our light.

The Mistress of My Dreams (I Condemn Myself) -an original poem

Peacefully I sleep and rest until she comes again,
(She always manages to.)
To disturb the peace I’ve cultivated
In the life I’ve separated from the acts of my past.
The guilt of my deeds haunts me
When she comes to serve notice.
“Have you come again, my dear mistress
To haunt and disturb?”
Yet this dove of innocence and love
Remains unmoved by my interrogation:
“YOU HAVE BROKEN PAROLE”
In stillness I do quake:
“Oh, Siren of my dreams, will there ever come a day when I am no longer in your service?”
A leaflet (the sentence of days gone by), old and dry,
With many bends and creases, tears and burns, falls gracefully upon me
As I lay resting (unrested) upon my bed:
“For corruption of innocence: 5 years.
For running: 5 years.”
And I weep,
Weep the tears of unsaving sorrow,
Dejection I only knew when I left her.
“Leave me be, sweet lady, my love.
I have moved on to be disturbed no more by my vow,
My hope against hope.
Five years I gave you, and five promised
Keep me bound in despair.
Release me from my oath
And we both may enjoy peace!

Dear Mother, will I ever be free or
Must I from night to night see this pure
And innocent face marred from the scars of my own hands?
Will your daughter ever be free from my memory
Or I from my guilt?”
My decade is not yet over.
My vow to love and to hurt remains.

A Curious Taste of Old – An Original Poem

image

Now there’s a taste I done forgot.
Might be ice cream or chocolot,
Or cookies and cream. Peanut butter?
Oh I know! It’s Nutter Butter!

Oh wait, no. I have another!
For sure it is not peanut butter.
Maybe Queen Anne’s chocolate cherries
Or even ranch dipped grapes or berries.

To find my taste may take a miracle.
Perhaps I simply want some cereal.
Oh I wish I could recall
Of that taste I had one Fall.

What if it’s OJ with some bacon?
That’s not how my breakfast’s taken,
No. A seasonal egg with cream?
This is all some awful dream.

It’s been an hour, and yet no luck.
At this point I may just eat a truck.
Oh wait! I know! A memory of old,
When I was a kid and was very bold!

Without a doubt it must be pudding
Of chocolate in a queer viewing:
Amid the toppings within a bun:
A burger with cheese, yes that’s the one!

THE EARTH OUGHT TO REJOICE TODAY -An Original Poem

imageTHE EARTH OUGHT TO REJOICE TODAY
And the heavens filled with gladness!
God has made for her a crown,
A diadem for the glory of the cosmos,
And a Ruby in it to adorn with beauty.
To her, angels have attended.
To her also, peace was given.

By her smile I am filled with joy
And giddiness has overcome me:
My heart is humbled at the
Sight of her innocence and of her purity,
And my soul receives strength when I see her resting.
Establish Catherine, oh Lord,
Steadfast and immovable.

Enable us also, our life-
giving Trinity, to glorify Thy wisdom.

The Successful 2016

The turn of the year brought about many heavy thoughts and cruel memories that I had to wrestle with. I have made many mistakes, as I’m sure most of us have. Mine are no more unique than yours, I’m sure. Unfortunately, that thought never stops me from spending hours at a time becoming consumed in the thick darkness of my own guilt.

Lately, though, I’ve noticed a great difference in the way I handle these negative thoughts. In my past, I would let them infect me, paralyze me, and destroy me. Recently, instead, I’ve been doing something about it. I’ve come to the point to where I’m tired of being consumed with negative thoughts and memories I can’t escape. Somewhere in the last six months I’ve decided to make the changes I need to make sure that these awful things can’t be repeated.

And so, many good things have simply fallen into place because of this change of attitude: I’ve gotten a promotion at work, I’ve paid off half of my debt, I’ve finished far more books in the last half a year than in my whole life, and I’ve overcome my crippling fear of strangers, even mastering the art of getting a phone number from them.

Naturally, then, I wanted to keep up this good work. So at the turn of the year, having been bombarded by the rampage of mind numbing mistakes of my past, I decided I was going to make a two resolutions this year: 1) read 52 books by the end of 2016, and 2) go back to school.

As far as one goes, I finished January having read 8 books cover to cover (the four Song of the Lioness books by Tamora Pierce and the first four Harry Potter books), and am currently on my 10th book. This is good for a few reasons. First, I’m committed to finishing the book series that I started back in high school, and hopefully to read those that I never got around to like the Chronicles of Narnia books. Second, since I’m starting to read these so late in the game, I’m seeing a lot of things that I really like and dislike in the books I’m reading. Essentially, I’m learning how to write (which is good because I love to write). Having 52 books to read in a year puts the quota at one book per week, and since I’m at book ten by week seven, I’d say I’m doing very well thus far.

Oh, and I’ve made some really good strides as far as going back to school is concerned. I filed my taxes at the end of January, as early as I could, so that I could fill out the FAFSA as early as possible. I’ve also spoken to both of my priests, all of my closest friends, a host of wise peers and good students, and mentors to ask for their wisdom, insight, tips, tricks, and knowledge on the challenges I’m going to be facing this fall.

Today, being the feast of St Polycarp, I spent away from work. (I’ve never worked on the feast of St Polycarp.) Instead, I was at Criswell college hoping to find out more on how to return in the fall and finish my degree. I’ve about 37 hours under my belt, which would leave me with about three years if I went back full time. Of course, that is my hope and thus far it seems quite possible. There are a few more details to be hammered out before I get carried away with it, but it seems to be working out for me. I still have to actually apply this Friday, schedule an appointment with the financial aid office, register for classes, and apply for a host of different scholarships, but by the prayers of Saints Polycarp, Nicholas of Myra, Nicholas of Japan, and Kosmas Aitolos, I’ll be attending Criswell in the fall of this year.

If I’ll be returning for a full time course load, the possible schedule would be:

Monday:

Old Testament Backgrounds
Hebrew 1

Tuesday:

Old Testament Survey 1
Topics in New Testament Studies: The Use of the Old Testament in the New
Baptist History and Distinctives

This is a very very good schedule that I hope remains unchanged. I like the professors I’ll be taking and will surely love the topics I’ll be studying (Baptist history too, even though I’m Orthodox).

 

If you made it to the end, please remember me in your prayers.