Advent Reflections: The Activity of Incarnation (Introduction)

Advent:
the short period
during which all
the years of groaning,
from that first fatal blow dealt
by selfish egocentricity to the
entirety of creation…

which turned off the Divine Light,
are compacted into one designated

thick period…

not “long”, but “longish”
and full of longing.

Thick.
Packed.
Full.
Stacked.
Designated…

to wait.
Wait.

WAIT
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Waiting for the most part is experienced as obdurate dull hunkering down and drinking from the cracked teacups of platitudes…ingesting such sops as “everything happens for a reason” and “this too shall pass”…yeah no…those things will not cut it, to get us thru this night, this absence of Divine Light that lays over all things, this utter darkness of the ego dictatorship.

Waiting…true waiting is become for us an empowered marking of events as they flow, infused by a knowing confidence that we wait for something certain and substantial…we wait for something coming and yet already here…we wait for the joy that veritably strains at the gates of birth to come forth!

We wait for someone…Someone…and every year that Someone comes fresh and new…and full of the very Presence that fits the absence of our existence like a Hand in a glove, like a key in a lock.
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The Ultimate Mystery of Existence is the Incarnation:  that joining of Creator and Creation into one full and harmonious miracle of Being…a joining that was planned and executed before even the foundations of the earth were laid, long ago sometime in eternity past when God in communion with God manifested the Eternal Sacred Heart in Passion Absolute and took up residence forever at the crux and core of all things, all rays, all paths and promises…that begotten presence which chose to be called Son climbed that tree and hung…hung…hangs…and hangs…

behind, beneath, above, within.

In every single cry of horror the cross is at the center.
In every single laugh of promise the cross is at the center.
In every single expression of wonder, every single nightmare of despair

the cross
at the center

And in the most central and deepest Intention is that Union, at the center of which the cross veritably pulsates!!
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It is the Mystery of the Incarnation…which is spoken of most plainly in the lowly caterpillar…or is it spoken of most darkly in the mystery of the Chrysalis? Wait…it is spoken of most clearly in the emergence of the butterfly.

We are that caterpillar, our lives a Holy Chrysalis of Dark Promise, and our becoming the butterfly whose wings we feel pulsating within our breast, that activity of Wonder which flutters in heaving convulsing implications that there must be Something!!

And so this morning, I wanna talk about that…the activity.

The activity of the Incarnation.

During Advent, we can look at the various “actors” in the Christmas Story to take our cues and understand our path forward, onward, higher/deeper, inward/outward…
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Part Two:  https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/19/advent-reflections-the-activity-of-incarnation-part-two/

Advent Reflections: The Activity of Incarnation (Part One)

Let us start with Mary.
She is the type for each and every one of us.

Each of us is a potential “Mother of God”,
a “blessed among all women”,
a chosen and fit vessel to carry the Child of Promise, the Messiah!

And Mama hovers, draws near, and watches…She waits too!

Did you know that God waits?
That every single day of time is God’s Advent waiting?

But back to Mother Mary…back to you…who if you will, can choose to “be” Mother Mary.  She said to God “Be it unto me according to Your Will”, and “my soul does indeed magnify God”!

OH!  The shockwaves of that declaration continue to ripple still!  And she did indeed receive the Child into her inmost self, and God took up residence there and joined Themself to humanity forever and always, and the butterfly was born…the God-human, the human-God…that indescribable uncanny union of the Divine and the human, which is spoken of as “the new creation”.

And Mary brought forth that Child…after a 9 month Advent of gestation…and that Child is the Deliverer of Creation.
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And this is the first phase of Advent Activity…and your first task.  Make room within your being for the Child to come and be implanted within…and bring forth that Incarnation of human/Divine life into this world in everything you do and say and think and are…you yourself in a very real sense “Mother” God…birth God…and it is your divine calling…no…your Divine RIGHT to birth God this Christmas, this year.

And what exactly would that look like, to bring forth God in your life?

Well…who is it that you want God to be for you?

That is who you must bring forth to the world.

It is the activity of Advent as an individual to birth and bring forth the Divine presence that only you can bring forth.

Oh Chosen Mary, blessed among all humans…search yourself, and make room…for the Incarnation within to come forth…
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Part Three:  https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/19/advent-reflections-the-activity-of-incarnation-part-three/

Advent Reflections: The Activity of Incarnation (Part Two)

Out in the cold, living in fields…Looking after animals, in the dark of night…

Lonely, stiff and cold, hungry, sleepless and miserable, surrounded by slumbering insensate beasts who couldn’t even begin to give a crap about anything except their own comfort and care…full bellies and security from wild beasts even if it meant being captive to their comfort and thus forever doomed to the dust-life…and never a dawning of even the beginnings of wondering what is Wonder…
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…it is there we meet the shepherds…who are aware…ALL too aware of these things.

I mean, c’mon!

The story tells us they were living out in the fields!
They had no homes.
They had no place to lay their head.

Except in the fields…with the beasts they cared for…and their own sense of wonder…wondering why the rich sat at ease in their cedar lined homes…wondering why their bellies were so empty when the refuse cans of the rich were so full of excess and waste…wondering why the stinking Romans had authority to take and break and dictate…

wondering why God was silent, absent, insensate, indifferent…
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and into that dark and lonely discomfiting despair came a Divine breaking in and breaking thru!!

In the midst of the darkest, most silent, most still, most absent of hope, most slumbering unaware time…came Heaven’s declaration that a Child had been born!  A Child had been Given!!

And His name was Wonderful!
His name was Counselor!
His name was Prince of Peace!

He was The Everlasting Father (yet an infant, meek and lowly)!
He was the Dayspring, the Bright and Morning Star!

Ahh…Morning Star…that Star that presages that night is drawing to a close, is ending.

And then the shepherds were given His core name, His Heart-Name…

Emmanuel.

God with us.  God with us.

God is with us.
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Go to the lowliest place, for that is where God chooses to appear!  Do you not realize that everything you wish God to be God IS in the revelation of Advent?  He chose the lowliest, the weakest, the most foolish…and in that place was born…in a feeding trough…a manger.

You do get that, don’t you?  The Bread from Heaven was laid in a manger (another name for trough from which cattle eat)?  And broken there for us…to “eat”…to “ingest” and have Him become one in essence with us?

The shepherds were told to go and see the baby, and then to go, and tell it on the mountains, tell it in the valleys, tell it everywhere there were hungry ears…that EMMANUEL HAD COME!

And they did.

Thus we see the second activity of Advent:  you are called, as a shepherd, as one who is aware (regardless of whether you are full of hope or full of despair…either one is the sign that you are an “aware one” and thus are chosen and blessed)…to go.

Go.

Tell it on the mountain.
Tell it in the valley.

And keep your eyes open to spot the Child!  You shall find Him in your neighbor…that “asshole” down the street that drives by you everyday, eyes fixed forward and exuding anger and frustration…that “airhead” in the cubicle next to you who is seemingly obsessed with her makeup and her dating life and fashion…
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You will find Him in that hopeless one next to you on the subway whose beautiful incredible skin is the wrong hue in this culture and whose shining incredible heart is so wounded and bound by the hatred of others…

You will find Him in the transwoman on the street just trying to live in her skin…in the homeless youth whose vision is more obscured by their hair than it is by their heart…

This is the activity of Advent for the shepherds:  find the Christ Child…in all His mangers…and proclaim that Child’s Name:

Emmanuel:  God is with us.
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Part Four:  https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/19/advent-reflections-the-activity-of-incarnation-part-four/

Advent Reflections: The Activity of Incarnation (Part Three)

In a foreign land, early.

Not early in the day…or even early in the year…

…but early in the Kairos of Significant Appointed Time!

And with Open Eyes…there waited Wise Men…who watched the skies, looking always upward for the arrival of…SOMETHING…they knew it not, what they sought, but they knew it had to be…because of the ache inside and the absence of something that caused the ache.

And then…there it was!  A star appeared in the sky, and in that quadrant that allus presaged SIGNIFICANCE!

And as they watched intently, behold!  It began to shift!  And as it shifted, so too within them something shifted, something began to be drawn…something…SomeONE…was tugging at them, pulling them.

And they left their homes, their places of comfort and familiarity…and began the road trip of all road trips, one that some scholars theorize lasted a couple years!
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Do you see this?

The incredible events of Advent that happened within the scope of 9 months for the principle actors and happened in one night for the shepherds…

…began as much as two years earlier for the Wise Men!

Talk about Active Waiting!  Their waiting involved a journey as well!

They passed thru many lands, and as they were men of means and wealth and influence, their entry into the various kingdoms and lands thru which they passed created a stir, even consternation!  But only because it was…odd…strange…unusual.

Until they got close…to the land for which such things held great import…that land governed by an evil and malevolent pile of egocentricity.  In “The Fox”, it was as if all of the original assertion of ego which extinguished The Beginning Light was concentrated and distilled…and this small, infected and diseased pus-ridden pimple of a human being who was so full of hate and fear that he even killed children in his attempt to maintain his power was jolted by the arrival of these men and the implications of the Star, and the shockwaves that were about to break.
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He was cunning, unctuous, viscous and smooth of speech like a cobra hypnotizing its prey…but the Wise Men were, well, wise to him…and they held him at bay with deference and deflection…and journeyed on after giving him the impression that they would indeed abide by his word when in his land…

and then they at last came to the place over which the Star pulsed and danced…

a baby…in a humble hovel stinking of beasts and despair…and their open eyes beheld Him.

They gave Him Gold…because they saw He was High and Royal, above all beings.
They gave Him Frankincense…because they also saw He was a Priest above all Priests.
They gave Him Myrrh…because they saw something hidden, from all others…until it was manifest…

…they saw that this Baby was simultaneously there, in that manger, and also at the crux of all, and hanging in agony, in Passion, and that His blood was the Spring that watered the very roots of the Universe…

and the Myrrh was burial spice…for by His death our life is.

They knelt…and worshipped…and were changed…by Emmanuel…the Incarnate One.

After awhile, they chose to depart…but did they obey “The Fox”?  Did they come under the rule of government?

No…they had been changed forever, and they now were serving the Agenda of heaven and they resisted the intention of the earthly…and they departed in “civil disobedience” in order to preserve the life of God With Us.

And that is the activity of Advent declared to you in the story of the Wise Men.
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Part Conclusion:  https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/19/advent-reflections-the-activity-of-advent-conclusion/

Advent Reflections: The Activity of Advent (Conclusion)

You must find the way that the Child calls you to live a life distinguished, transformed…changed after your encounter with the Incarnate One…

Encountering Emmanuel first within yourself, and bringing Him forth in the manger of your life…
Encountering Emmanuel next within others…and telling those who still languish in darkness that Emmanuel has come…
Encountering Emmanuel then in the World…and living in a way distinguished and different, resulting in the establishment of His Kingdom, the government on His shoulders, and His never-ending rule of Justice and Mercy Kissing…

This is the lesson and activity of Advent for us…may it be Living Bread for us.
Amen.
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On Your Way Back Home

It’s over there,
down around
that small merry curve

duck your head, Dear
and be knighted
by mischievous holy
bows branching
into yearning twitchy
twigs

as you walk
thru the Sacred Arch
on your way back home

nestled
in the snowy reach
there on the
porch

of the
Last Deep Forest
round about
those happy fringes

Hiding With Grace

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a quiet roaring
carries me
into the
arms

of
deep
forest
mystery

a
silent
snarl at
everything
that injures,
that horror harms

rises up thru jade velvet
moss dark and pungent and drawing
me down
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I
sit
running
my fingers
thru silent silver
fog

creeping
around
tree trunks
and caressing
their yearning
tops

with
misty
lips
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and
I
sit
I
see

that
fog
enters
me

and
instructs
with

kisses
and
tickly
fingers
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and
teaches
me

how
to
hide
with

Grace
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Advent Poem: The Season of Emptiness

 

This poem is about how the work of Advent involves a preparation of Empty Bequeathed…and it uses transition as its vehicle.
This Christmas,
nothing has been exposed,
revealed as the imposter
it still masquerades as.
I am empty of screams
but full of me and
ready to receive
the Promise of words
to give voice to
what’s unspeakable, unnameable,
to dress that wound
infected with nothing
and salve it with
the scratchy tickle of truth
and set free we
shadowbound, to be
our shining selves,
casting shadows
instead of being flat
and cast by them.

It is the season of emptiness, and places
prepared by pain are hungry
for the Presence
and the Promise
that only emptiness contains.

Source: Advent Poem: The Season of Emptiness

Advent Poem: The Season of Enough

My Favorite Advent Poem!  From 2014


It’s the season to journey
to places we know so well
but haven’t been to…
and now it is time
in this never enough world
to declare the season has come:
it’s the season of enough!

ENOUGH!

Enough of the certified baby so boring,
our “gentle Lord Jesus so timid, meek and mild”,
enough of the muffled mage soft-spoken and sage
who wouldn’t say shit even if He’d a mouthful!…

Source: Advent Poem: The Season of Enough

Advent Poem: The Season of Hope


I set off on this journey full of hope.
And wrapped in splendours of belonging here…
or there…it doesn’t really matter there or here
which far exceeds being nothing nowhere

But a…

Source: Advent Poem: The Season of Hope

Advent Poem: The Season of Expectancy

Advent 2014


I’m homesick for a Blue Place
that might not be real…
but I know it is.

It has to be!

It floats here,
Azure in my silver
longing heart unsinkable
and it’s scarlet voice calls
from Beyond into beyond…

Source: Advent Poem: The Season of Expectancy

Advent Poem: The Season Of Wasteful Love

It’s time, it’s time for waking up from sleep!
Wake up from drunken stupor dull and cheap!
Embrace the road of pardon, so costly
the path of mercy rich, completely free
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For mercy falls thick, unfathomable
in unexpected places, shattering.
Grace oozes to the unpalatable,
and ruins our sense of who is deserving.

God’s grace is lavish, prodigal and full,
prodigious in the Person of a God
who comes among His people glad, and gives
Himself in trust into their clutching hands…
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and reefs and broken in the tragic wreck
God comes, knowing the outcome in advance
exhausting, costly, God comes down in dreck

to simply be defamed, to squandered be
Ah…who can grasp this wasteful heart of God?
That Sacred Heart marked by Peculiar Grace
Disruptive Grace, unsettling the proud?
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That Grace, that roaring Grace Alive and Loud!
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And so beloved, do persist in love
when you grow faint and nearly overwhelmed,
persist in peace and persevere in grace
when rank injustice dark obscures His Face

for on the other side of justice waits
the grace disruptive, jarring and so thick
and lavish laid upon us, blow by blow
and matching every lash…wastefully so!

God’s grace disrupts our prideful righteousness
Grace summons us to choose, respond in kind
And our cheek naked, turned and tender there
And Grace, just grace, that covers every care.
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Advent Poem: Awaited Invitation

a weighted invitation
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a hush emerges,
pregnant time,
a sunlit drop
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hanging on
the tip
of that
sharp green leaf,
capturing the sun
just before
release,
letting go
to join
desiring
earth
in
eternal
petrichor
blossoms
Related imagethe moment
air becomes

breath

the moment
breath
dissolves
again

into
air
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and the moment
pierces, passes
thru
into,

a silent arrow
stopping hearts,
that sharp and hollow
point piercing, sucking
hope and fear alike
in one fell
zinging

sssccchhhuuunnnkkk!

noetics fall away
yield the moment
to Poetics…

Awaited
Invitation
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Advent Poem: Away With The Gimmicks (echoing ‘Away In A Manger’)

away with the gimmicks
we’re done with your crap
the lies that you laid down
the manger a trap

we want a tradition
that’s living and free
and songs of thanksgiving
and fresh liturgy
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that’s ancient and yet new
and still relevant
so profound, so simple
so “un-sycophant”

Entrance, proclamation,
the Eucharist true,
sending out, gathering,
preaching Good News
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Restore the New Baby
the Time Bomb in time
the Bread come from Heaven
the Living New Wine

away with the gimmicks
the scripts and the lies
So faith, hope and love can
come open our eyes.
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Advent Poem: We Wait For God Comes Near

I cannot shake this snowflake-season
and its many unexpected discordant moments
of Christmas preparation somewhere between

red hot errands at the mall

and

the soul felt its golden worth.
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But this discord can be a door to the kingdom
where Jesus is from, Jesus that Heavenly Immigrant,
Jesus that Redemptive Refugee come to our
dark little houses of trinkets and treasures
and useless electronics of technicolor
sentimental uselessness.

We wait like stones wait
(gritty and granite and grey)
to cry out in loud refrain…
we wait, we wait but we wait not
in vain and not diminished though we are
discomforted while we wait earthbound and heavy,
and grow large in excelsis deo expectations longing
1422220803140628_tallfor redemption and relief,
for peace on earth,
goodwill to all,
release from darkness
loneliness, disillusionment,
we wait for God comes near
to this world as we know it.
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Advent Poem: Seeds of Sorrow

The end of exile and darkness
began at the manger of Jesus,
where seeds of sorrow sprouted
(sorrow Theirs and ours)
in Joyful Birth, and drawing
near to earth from heaven
as angels’ song is hushed

in holy hesitation
as Jesus Christ is born.
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He, God’s seed of sorrow sown
into the earth in Hope
of such Divine rejoicing
and harvesting of many
children returned Home
and exile at last over,
that exile self-imposed.

Advent Poem: Holy Wassail Wine

God,
rest Ye…

here in the midst
of the mess and the malls
and the masses of middling
and the muddles of mercy
needed, so badly needed.
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Let nothing

Masquerade as something
filling hearts so full
(of nothing…nuffin)
that they “feel full”
and still hunger for
bread become stone
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For
Jesus Christ was
born upon this day,

again in the sound of muzak
again in the tread of tired
tramping feet tiptoeing
around grapes of wrath
unstored in stores
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again…be born
again upon
This Day

O tidings of comfort and joy!
For the final word
is not dismay
and darkness shall not
have the final say!
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here is joy
enfleshed,
mingled with
sorrow like
Holy Wassail Wine
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The Day I Learned To Love “The Santa Lie”

Source: The Day I Learned To Love “The Santa Lie”

I love this…just…

this.

See…we did this, told beautiful and magnificent stories of Santa.  In fact, I wrote an origin tale about Santa Claus that even involves the Baby.  I tromped around on rooftops, and I walked on the carpet in ashes to leave boot prints…

…and the coup de gras?  I told the kids that some parents understood that Santa had such a big job that they wanted to help share the burden of reaching all children to give gifts so they themselves took on the mantle of the jolly fat man…and in essence did indeed become Santa Claus.

I loved those days…every magical miracle moment.  I stayed up all night long setting up race tracks and laying out Polly Pockets.

My dear friend and brother John writes about this so well, so eloquently…please head over and enjoy.
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Advent Poem: Who Can Say?

So long ago and far away
e’en though the miles are under one
and echo still in wonderment
we trimmed a tree with love and grace
and feasted on such shining face
that echoed 4 in that bright place…

and in my heart I live there still
and see the shine and smell the green
and on those wings I rise and thrill
above these deserts low and mean
while angels gather near the earth
and I wait for the Baby’s birth

and understand this thing…at last
I am here to see the sights
and feel the joy and hear the song
I’m here at last…it was sooo long
and who can say what’s best, and true
to be locked up and yet have you

or be bereft of everyone
and have the birth of me be done?
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Advent Poem: Unfeigned Without Reserve

In the midst
of this storm
of pain
these clouds
of hurt
these winds
of death

I stand and on
You do I call
and ever trust
and ever long

For You to bring
Your peace on earth
and those who call
upon Your Name

to lay down useless weapons grim

And lift their hearts
to Light again

and love unfeigned
without reserve

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Advent Poem: This Waiting Time

Sometimes frost grips limbs
once lean and limber in the wind
now long grown stiff and creaky
and I hear them crack and groan
in those sticky clutching fingers
cold and frosty, fingers
cold and frosty.
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Sometimes ennui (cold)
grips my soul (grown old)
and in its grip I groan
(groan old) and my soul
(my waiting soul) runs
around my heart and
around my heart

as the clock’s tail
ticks and twitches, chases
its tail like a cat relentless,
(useless) and that (waiting)
that frosty cold difficulty of waiting
remains there clinging tightly
in the fading day.
But Advent…

Advent
Advent comes again
and gives her gift.
In the cold and dead of winter,
trauma seems to sting much deeper,
and healing for the broken parts
of my life…and the people that I love?
Seems so much harder to obtain…
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When it comes to these things
things so staggering and important,
healing, peace and goodness
on the earth, freedom from suffering,
well…waiting is hard, so hard and painful.

But in these moments I’m remembering
I’m troubled in soul and looking
for something transcendent, greater
than the hurt and pain and suffering,
something, someOne warm enough
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persistent, faithful, warm enough

to breathe on us
to break the ice
and give us life
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Long familiar sweet hymns play
wherever I go, I remember
I am poor, imperfect, waiting for
the God Who comes down,
Comes Down, God With Us
Emmanuel! Hosanna!
In the Highest Holy Fire!
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and I feel again
the gentle nudge
of a knock deep
at the door
of my small
and icy lonely
heart.
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Advent is the time of waiting
waiting for the One (the One)
Who embraced body, embraced sorrow
Came to show us all the fullness
of just being home, present, and real.

And we are long reminded in
our cold dolorous longing
what we’re longing for actually
a WhoWho, Who we long for,
God…always coming nearer to us.
tumblr_nxyvx0qB8d1sbg1lmo1_500I have found a place
inside (in Advent, inside you)
that place where once
you die, you…
you come Alive…
A place where pain
and pleasure weigh out
just the same
and all that’s left
is only Love,
tumblr_nveprpyg6U1tdo940o1_1280And every sorrow touched
by the wild gold Promise
that in this very place
(of waiting)
Jesus has been born
(is born)
and will be born
again and again,
and again
breaking thru
tumblr_nvtonjz7IJ1qam6uto1_1280that icy grip
thawing out
our longing hearts,
melting all
our sin and deaths
so we can
laugh again.

Advent Poem: To Go To Bethlehem

Uncanny, peculiar,
uncomfortably strange,
I tend my fires and tell my story…
tumblr_n40izwKWgH1s5neh1o1_1280the story of
this quirky girl
overly-intelligent
and stuck in time
that is not time, so
unreconciled to time
so bound up in its realm.
tumblr_n5np124LJd1s5neh1o1_500I am strapped there
on Your wrist (watch)
a condor in a cage
passing from quick present
to some furious future
and thus so fast becoming
dim, and dark, and past
and wondering if I amtumblr_n3ng7oK9xj1s5neh1o1_1280ever?  present?
ever a moment?
ever a significant occasion
or an immeasurable quality?

I want real time!tumblr_nyhnrwYzEl1qllucco2_1280time which breaks through
with a shock of joy
like a leap into Crater Lake
on a snowy New Year’s morning,
time where we are completely
un-self conscious and far more
real in some eternal now
I thirst for a moment jeweled!
tumblr_nycmluCX5a1qat5pio1_500a moment
so sweet or magnified
it seems to stop time
but doesn’t because time
becomes a point so limply moot
and thus no longer dirty moat
between me and my true self
tumblr_mz5pbxrvwe1slvh08o2_1280And here I sit, beside time’s bonfire
tumblr_nvpeukM0QC1u7b31go1_1280and sparks fly up
and away so quick
to join the stars
and glimmer and
I poke at this fire
hot and tender
and tend it…
with my tinder636e5f6d27dbf806212c969a3560ca33and wonder how to be
here in this already
and not yet, between
That Eternal Now
and this one,
and the One
Who There Inhabits?tumblr_nxgij6jzXP1rnl2wvo1_1280wonder how to be aware
of life while I am living it?

wonder how to limp courageous
and relinquish all control
of self and self awareness?

wonder how to laugh courageous
and look for glory
in the storied
wonder of the ordinary?

wonder how to live courageous
and be surprised by One
who dares draw near?

wonder how to love courageous
and take off rings and watches?
tumblr_n1uzzfw14n1s5neh1o2_1280
I burn calendars and open
my heart uncanny,
strange peculiar…
tumblr_nfi2j2A3Sf1t043jao1_500to see eternity in
the midst of time
to go to Bethlehem
today and everyday
in this time and place

where glimpses of the eternal
come quiet, unexpectedly
they come and they upset
our every notion static about time
and all we discover there within.
and in the east her long shroud trailing
I open
my Uncanny Peculiar
Uncomfortably Strange Heart
to the story of All and Ever
ending Never

I choose
to live somewhere between
the already and not yet,
caught and held
by the One who
dwells within Outside.
tumblr_ny2xn8zBkj1trdezwo1_540And so the fire burns away the moments
And we must choose our portion:
whether here we tarry or if
we choose to journey
Pregnant by some God

To Go To Bethlehem
tumblr_nygiapTyw51qat5pio1_1280

Epiphanies

aienkien
(A form of Japanese Proverb)
合縁奇縁
[あいえんきえん, aien kien]
shared bond, mysterious bond
(lit.: shared/mutual fate/destiny/bond, strange/mysterious fate/destiny/bond. This phrase is a classical yojijukugo
(a four-character idiom in the style of classical Chinese)
used to refer to the mysteries of attraction and relationships
between men and women; perhaps also between men and men,
or women and women, though no such usage has been seen classically).

shared bonds mysterious
played out in fates mutual,
proclaimed by destiny

destiny conquered, that is!

400 years and dead silence
under the sun, inside
the ruin and run
of life lived praying
to a “no comment” God.tumblr_nho490RuES1rgfa66o1_500my faith persists 合縁奇縁!
my faith like white blood cells
spawning from my bones
and then devouring anything
they deem dangerous to destiny…
and then dying in the James Dean Code
of live fast and die young.

In the 400 years.
Of Silence.
Under the sun.tumblr_n4dz3xUIfL1t2po5ao1_1280I felt it like bones, the silence!
I felt it like bones, my faith!
And I knew it like I know my bones
aienkien…合縁奇縁

And from here and now,
after the Word spoken
400 years seems like seconds.

But what about the people
who lived then, under that sun
and were 合縁奇縁
by history
by destiny
by bond?tumblr_nhn4v5Btim1r2zs3eo1_1280Whole lives lived and
not a word!
not a finger!
lifted to lay them down gentle
in the bluebells of a warm midnight!
God sat in Heaven like Summer
and said nothing like Winter.

Silence…400 years…and people
living whole lives from gun to tape
and not one word in
aienkien  合縁奇縁 .tumblr_nhmhn4dbSR1r3t8ico1_1280So when was it enough?  The silence?
How much is enough!
Did God finally see people yearning
like kindling yearns to be tossed
into the fire and be consumed
and become flame,
become heat,
become smoke
rising and fragrant and free?

tumblr_mx5ic3qFYG1s0x275o1_1280I’ll never know here.
Now.
But I sense somehow that
Silence has its languages
that speaking knows not of,
verbs that act in stillness not moving
and speak to a people

(aienkien 合縁奇縁)

thru epiphanies.

tumblr_m3smxrAP3u1qbitbyo1_1280

aienkien
合縁奇縁

Advent Poems: The Season of Revelation

the arrival of that miracle
our hearts all know lurks
just outside this skein of time,
practicing its own waiting
for the miracle moment of emergence…and
redemption of yet another season of waiting.

Revealed.our_ends_are_beginnings_by_paradisiacpicture-d7oasob

A God
shouldered It’s Way
into the world today…
This God, revealed
rough and roaring
and wrapped in the skin
of this baby asleep,
hidden here in our heart

Revealed.tumblr_ngacq8vgRy1s7jx17o1_1280

Reunion waits for me and you…
That towering act of redemption
Resounds throughout all of creation, today

Revealed.tumblr_ng4cw8PIiF1soxzypo1_500

Lion, Lamb and Baby through the smoke
Paying every Promise that They Spoke

Revealed.tumblr_nfydtomiHu1s9ib3xo1_500

God has stepped into our world
to dig us out of every prison
we disguised as snug burrows
and cozy hobbit holes

Revealed.tumblr_n0wa71grGI1rj8gavo1_500

This Christmas,
nothing has been exposed…

Revealed.tumblr_msmhh7xdmD1rq9ek2o1_500

Time will never simply pass by
without engraving its mark
in a stab to my heart or a tender sweet touch
or a mortal wound bleeding and dark

Revealed.tumblr_lxlo4o4U3N1r8xslzo1_1280

Kneel where you are, for that is where it is,
that lowly manger unseen by the great
and in that manger, there inside of you
your face upturned and wet with Heaven’s dew
the Christ Child comes to make all things brand new

Revealed.tumblr_ngw3mjvEWs1r3fkjno1_1280

They…hungry…ready
to come to us now.
Them with us
move in us
empty us
to satisfy us
dine with us
and hunger ever sharp and sated
all at once

Revealed.tumblr_ngj4vr7T1y1r1vfbso1_1280

…and we?
With gratitude we enter, invitation tightly clutched to aching breast…
we kneel hushed and astonished safe and sound as we are changed
by this Child’s Gift (or is the Child Himself the gift that’s given?)
Invited to approach and revel, knowing what we’ve always known
is finally here and shining present, Sacred Heart Alive Forever
in the season of fulfillment pure and everlasting…

Revealed.wg441_ghost_1

…and so we yearn, together, aching
in the lonely moments waiting
perfect timing of those winds
to blow away the mists
and let that mountain shine again
in solid clarity and splendour promises
that someday the Divine Loneliness
and human grieving longing
will be overcome by
Faith and Hope and Love

Revealed.tumblr_mozejosP561rn6qqco1_1280

I am mindful of
many things I hold in faith,
committed to God

Revealed.tumblr_mp4l3fWgCO1s6oboso1_1280

For here it is we sit and wait,
for the coming of our Heart
Their meaning to our Core impart.

Today, the Life Revealed,
the Heart of God Revealed
utterly different than the heart of man
revealed.

And you?
Here in this season of Revelation?
Do you dare?

Look within
Look without

and see what is revealed.

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Advent Poem: The Season of Silence

Today hubbub and hustle
tramways trollies and trellises
crammed with travelers, trophy-takers and talkers

the cacophony joyous ascends, surrounds, spreads
and in this din great tidings of cheer resound
and rebound, and return round again.

But at the core, where I sit,
(you are sat there too, you know.  Just listen)
it is silent.  The Quiet is here.

Thick.  Palpable, wooly white and
smelling of seasoned woods and wet forest kneeled
and of the hush in the heart of the Snow-Covered Fields.

It descends, swells, covers and crawls
(on feet like Sandberg’s cat)
and fills the core of cheer with substance

The substance of Silence.
The presence of Anticipation.Image 001

For here it is we sit and wait,
for the coming of our Heart
Their meaning to our Core impart.

And as the night stretches out and goes on
and the din dies down exhausted and content
the silent sound of labor has begun.

The shriek of sweat trickles down
(fingers down life’s blackboard revealing white beneath)
her face, contorted in composed intent concentration

Bearing down, the groaning of contractions
and the towering soundless shouts of no one there with her
except her earnest clumsy man so loving, so full of silent fear.

*me sat here, throat lumpified and choked,
mummified and heart stokes,
smoke stacked up, backed up
and no where to go but inward,

no words to say no deeds to do
no place to go no getting away
no arriving new just sat here,

enduring, waiting*

The silent moment flexes hard and pushes
Her face a rictus of the wrenching passion
of the passage of a God, her baby

and then deliverance and everything on pause
every heart breath held and chest unmoving
until the night is pierced by One Small Cry that echoes still

across our darking skies,
in the fullness of Anticipation
In the Season of Silence, this Holy Present Silence.

tumblr_ngxzz03rdG1r2zs3eo1_500

Advent Story: The Healing of the Light King (Epilogue)

 For Part TEN, click HERE
*****     *****     *****     *****     *****

LK062
The old man was quiet, and then said simply, “Yes. I did.”
“Oh, show us, Grandpa. Please show us,” the children begged in unison.OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

“Now, now,” protested the old man. “It’s time for bed, you fuzzyheads! Come into my arms and I’ll carry you to your room.

“Oh, Grand-pa!” they wailed, but they obeyed.

He hoisted them like they were babes and turned to leave the fire’s light. He hesitated, and then he strode over to a dark, lifeless lamp, and stood still a moment. The Children, one under each arm, looked at each other excitedly and held their breath.

And then…the old man breathed on the lamp…WHOOSH…and laughed as light

…pure light…

leapt up in the lamp in answer to the call of his breath.
LK004
The old man laughed and danced around the room, swinging the children high and breathing upon lamp after lampLK010LK026LK043
until the whole room had blossomed, ablaze in light, and then he whisked the children out of the room and whirled down the hall to their beds.
LK031 LK030
KONICA MINOLTA DIGITAL CAMERA
*****     *****     *****

Some time later, he emerged.

“Hello Father”, came a deep, strong voice.

The speaker was a tall, noble man with grey streaks of wisdom in his beard and a golden crown upon his head.The old man looked up and grinned. “Hello son, err, Your Highness,” he bowed with only a hint of teasing.

“Kids settled in, Father?” asked the King. “I was just coming to tuck them in.”

“Oh yes. I expect you’ll find them ready and waiting. Ready and waiting”.

The king looked at his father…all dressed beautiful red—like blood—and hair white as snow and shinning bright.

“You’re putting’ on a little weight, there Father. Your belly looks like jelly!’

“Aye, that it does, son, that it does. Too much ale and good cooking’ I guess.”

“But you look healthy, dad. By the Star—you look like you will live forever!”

The old man threw back his snowy head, pulled his crimson cloak around him, and roared in delight.

“That I may, son, that I may”.

Then he walked down the dark hall to his chambers and as he passed, every dark dormant lampLK048

blazed on in glorious heavenly echo of the light of his passing.
LK049
The King stood and watched him until he disappeared round the corner, and the echoes of his laughter faded in the distance.
LK047
“Behold, the Light King”, he said softly. “Behold.

He turned and went in to his children.

The End
LK066

 

*****     *****     *****     *****     *****
For Part TEN, click HERE

Advent Poem: The Season of Promise (in haiku)

The sound of raindrops
and the smell of fir branches…
I was lapped by time.

I am mindful of
many things I hold in faith,
committed to God.

In this reverent mist
silver memories descend
gentle on my face.

I think of my heart,
its four chambers birthed from me
leaving Their Promise

soft there inside me,
layers of a tight red rose
blossoming each day

It’s these Christmas gifts,
given in deep love, bright hope
Of that final gift…

…of arriving home,
every Promise made fulfilled,
All Things Then Restored.

tumblr_n9blouDPcv1rs3ineo1_1280

 

Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 10)

Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 9)

Advent Poem: The Season of Loneliness

Unbidden,
moving like mist in mountains
slow and fast and slow and long,
and lingering, white laced in grey,
and crawling, clinging to ramparts
and ridges that stand
strong and stark and still
catch an occasional ray of sun
from outside…but dimming
as the sun retreats before
the darkness of the night
that rushes over everything
with recollections
haunting,
isolating,
obliterating
sight.

Unknown,
vaporous,
real but irresistible and arising from…
*moan*…
and meaning…
*sob*…

climbing,
clinging,
clutching
clouding out,
shutting out
shouting out
solid rock stable and holding hands
reeling, cavorting, swirling

Undoing,
settling down on everything
and growing quiet,
and gaining in gravity
and growing heavy,
and draining memory
of every drop of blood
until everything
is overwhelmed and overtaken
and surrounded in the silver
of the dull fogs of what once was
and alas will never ever be again.

Alone,
in fields, waiting,
staring at the skies
so clear and so occluded,
every loss hung there bright brilliant
on deep black skies never ending,
every sorrow there is twinkling,
every hurt is glowing blinking there
so merry, so unyielding,
I gaze upon my starry constellations
of great loss and ruination
marking time and pointing steady
so unchanging in this night…

Cold,
missing home,
missing that place (and time)
where all things hushed and gathered
noisy in a deafening din,
all collected, full, o’erflowing
from my tender heart within
the very center of the moment
in the Advent Season Present
bathed in wonderful quick joy.

Real,
that place then but lost now in my mind
(like ridges and ramparts now submerged).
The sheep rustle restless
and underneath their bleating
I hear the sound of bleeding
in the heart of living memory
of hearth and home now pierced
and rent and disappearing…
and I wait here,
lonely in this mist and overcome,
hunkered down but kissed and left so numb
as I recall the bliss of Christmas past
and have no hope of Merry Christmases
to dawn and to me come.

Winds,
well they exist,
and they do blow!
Cleansing from the North
and from the south they flow
in warmth and restoration,
dispelling every fog of gloom
and routing ever hurtful memory
that ever happened.
I fix my gaze on that One Star,
that portent bright, surpassing
all the mocking, twinkling titters
of the past its reminders constant.

Here,
in the season of loneliness
my lonely Advent heart
echoes that loneliness that lingers
there inside the heart of God
and so we yearn, together, aching
in the lonely moments waiting
perfect timing of those winds
to blow away the mists
and let that mountain shine again
in solid clarity and splendour promises
that someday the Divine Loneliness
and human grieving longing
will be overcome by
Faith and Hope and Love.

Grace,
and peace,
in the season of loneliness,
Love, Charissa

tumblr_ncjmcsAsi01tw2qkpo1_400

Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 8)

Advent Poem: The Season of Fulfillment

1
All the world is hushed and still,
waiting under heavy burdens
white and grim and unrelenting,
groaning, crushed and disillusioned,
longing for redemption, peace,
goodwill and aching for release
from darkness, loneliness and death,Image 0032
and outrage…OUTRAGE
seething in this Silent Night
that echoes with Death’s violation
and defilement of our dreams
and destiny…such desecration…
Death so vicious and relentless
in its Never ending hungry lusty rusty horror.

tumblr_naz7399eA11qlh9eeo1_500

3
He came small and vulnerable
to bear the scars of our outrage,
came near enough to prove He’d stay,
regardless…Closer
than we realize or can imagine
in this night so long and lonely
Small He came to us, undignified and oh so tiny.wg836_desire4
That nearness, Love Personified
The Incarnation towers tall
Mysterious, absurd and all the while
Undignified, God’s Trump card (HIM)
played foolishly and weak
upon the table of the strong
confounding all the worldly wise, so clever and austere.

tumblr_n9hyazE1ZK1tirxdoo1_12805
Dignified? Undignified!
when Love became personified,
“Immanuel Undignified and one of us”
(and yet still outside twisty time)
approaching us as one of us,
held guilty and responsible
accused of shattering religion! Such a glory crime!tumblr_nap87vpqde1rwtzqno1_1280

6
And dwelling here in innocence and staying in our sorrow cold
but not to merely dispel shadows or resolve conundrums, no!
Bearing our humanity, and present with us in the midst of darkness,
Oh The Truest Light, The Deepest Joy, The Most Glad Heart
Fulfilling All Expectancy when every hope will come to pass!
Submitting to a grisly death to hold the whole world in His Heart that
He had held dear in His Hand to mediate our case to God… tumblr_nfco87W3fA1tw3geao1_500

7
The Child did Bleed, the Child did Die, and we?
With gratitude we enter, invitation tightly clutched to aching breast…
we kneel hushed and astonished safe and sound as we are changed
by this Child’s Gift (or is the Child Himself the gift that’s given?)
Invited to approach and revel, knowing what we’ve always known
is finally here and shining present, Sacred Heart Alive Forever
in the season of fulfillment pure and everlasting.tumblr_n8wb7sIxEO1qkww7to1_1280

 

Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 7)

Advent Poem: The Season of Hunger

a pregnant mother waits…hopes…fears…
weary and unflagging, full of energy
and yet, so still and growing
larger with each day.

and inside her heart each quality increases…
hope and fear, expectant joy,
after all, it’s said she is expecting!
Expecting…and growing larger.

But with her hope grows hunger!
A hunger for the end of every minute waiting!
A hunger for her baby, to hold and cuddle quiet
A hunger to sing songs of love and comfort in the night.

Expecting…and growing hungry
for bread of life within her
also growing and expectant,
rising in the oven of human worth.

(other ovens hungry ate their fill
of offerings from monsters of the Breach
but this was not unnoticed by The Justice
nor beyond the scope of Mercy’s reach)tumblr_meim9rS2Ce1rguz4ho1_500

She hungers, swelling curved expectant in the night
The word becoming flesh and bone is served
a feast of human need and sorry fright
and love, devotion, faith, and truth and grace
and laughter there on each expectant face.

We…pregnant…waiting
in our weakness,
lonely lowly moments silent

They…hungry…ready
to come to us
Them with us
move in us
empty us
to satisfy us
dine with us
and hunger ever sharp and sated
all at once.

tumblr_lwzjwpSxoZ1qaxf8ko1_1280

Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 6)

LK021
“Aye”, echoed Towser. It is our privilege to carry you. It is not every shepherd that gets to carry a King to meet a King.”

And off we went, Gillae leading the way, the flock following close at heel, the group of shepherds scattered round them, and then Mikkens, Towser and I bringing up the rear. We travelled an hour or so in this manner, following the star, men speaking to one another in hushed expectant tones.

As we travelled, I marveled at the endurance of my 2 bearers, and I could not help but reflect on the difference between these 2 and my previous 2 companions. One thing was becoming evident the more time I spent with these shepherds: Royalty is not a title or station in life, but rather a way of being that is oriented towards joyful sacrifice. Perhaps my bearers were kings more than the ones who had left me to die.
LK012
After a while, I started to doze off, rocked by the soft motion of our travel.

I was startled by a voice and woke to find myself staring into Brownie’s intense gaze.

“Gillae wasn’t telling you the whole story, and I think you should know it, being a king and all. I don’t know much about kings, you being the only one I ever met” (and with this he eyed me dubiously), “but I can tell you that Gillae is braver than any man I ever met, and he is stronger and more giving than any person alive. Many times we have all been too tired to take our watches and we fall asleep, only to wake and see him on guard, over us and the sheep both. And in truth, tonight’s events have only added to his exploits!”

“Brownie” said I, “You have all seemed on edge and wary, and of course all of your hints and outbursts tell me there is more going on here than meets the eye. What exactly befell you on this evening of wonders?”

Brownie looked forward at Gillae to make sure he wasn’t listening…and no fear of that for Gillae was leading, and walking at ready as if expecting an attack of robbers, or worse. Then in a low voice, Brownie began to speak.

“Well, it all happened like Gillae said, but when the gigantic man appeared to us, we fell to the ground like dead men, but not Gillae! He stepped forward and raised his staff, and challenged the newcomer to identify himself as friend or foe, and if foe to prepare to meet his doom. The giant shining guy began to speak to us as we all clung to the ground like babes to their nursemaids.
LK016

I will never forget his words:

‘FEAR NOT, oh sons of Adam’

he declared.

‘I bear to you good tidings from the throne of the Most High God Himself, tidings of great joy, to all men in all places here and for all time until the Breaking is made Unbroken on that Day. Unto you is born this day, in David’s city, a Savior! Christ the Lord!’

“His voice hung in the air like a living thing, and was frightening but beautiful. He said he was the angel of the Lord come from the throne of the Maker.

‘You are to go to the Savior with all haste. Look for Him wrapped in swaddling clothes’

said the angel.

‘But what are we supposed to do, break into people’s houses?’ Gillae said. The angel gave a thunderous blast with his voice, that must have been angelic laughter, and it both chilled and invigorated my soul.

‘Look in the stables, Shepherd, for this King will be with the sheep, lying in a manger.’

“‘A manger’” Gillae replied. ‘What kind of king is it that is born a Savior yet is lying in a feeding trough?’

“When he said this, the guy just threw back his head and again thundered a laugh. But bold Gillae demanded proof that he was the angel of the Lord, and not some seducing deceiver from the Breaker’s dungeons. He actually stepped forward and thrust his staff into the face of the angel!

“Well, the angel just glared at that staff, and then rose straight up about 50 feet, and clapped his hands three times…and the night split open
LK041
and rolled back like a scroll and in its place was light like you cannot imagine!

“It was like a hole had opened in the night, and the shadows were torn away, and Heaven’s own glory was invading the dark earth, and if you think we were scared before, we were simply undone now!”

*****     *****     *****     *****     *****
For Part FIVE, click HERE

Advent Poem: The Season of Eternity

Time running in streaming ribbons behind laughing children
twisting in a holiday blur of color, movement flowing
Time swimming sinister, sleek in the silent night
hungry to devour the Child there before it quiet
and in that cattle trough.

Snuffling with snout insistent, inhaling fragrances
of common birth and bearing…and something else
coming…the smell of death overlaid in incense
but underneath…the smell of…what?
The smell of other.

And then those guileless eyes flash open,
dark and endless but not with perpetuity
no!  Endless in the Moment never ceasing!
Endless in a present never moving but never still either,
And time found itself hooked and billeted and beached.

Time is just a boat, no…a moat…a mote in eternity’s eye
Time is but a note in Wonder’s Symphony!
And with the Baby’s birth inside of Time
Eternal bells of joy ring out the chime
Olly Olly Oxen FREE!

The season of eternity is nigh,
when God gives Their response to our hurt cry
and renders youth and age trite matters moot
and blows away the ashes and the soot
revealing hearts like stars still shine beneath.

Kneel where you are, for that is where it is,
that lowly manger unseen by the great
and in that manger, there inside of you
your face upturned and wet with Heaven’s dew
the Christ Child comes to make all things brand new.

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Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 5)

Advent Poem: The Season of Redeeming Time

I’m surprised by the passing of time
it waves as it dances along
and leaves me here on this bench in the park
with astonishment gripping my heart.

Time will never simply pass by
without engraving its mark
in a stab to my heart or a tender sweet touch
or a mortal wound bleeding and dark.

And I think of the birth of a child
who will dance with time in ignorance
and get lost in occasions of beauty and joy
and its happy and frolicking lark.

But time walks away without caring
as it always has, does, and will do
and that’s when the child sees the back-side of time
as it passes austere, tall and stark.

The back-side of time is a window
to somewhere beyond time’s long reach
So I follow, and run after fleet-footed time
as it swims like a quick-silver shark.

But time just leaves me for dead.
Tell me, why is this such an outrage?
This act of irreverence, indifference unfeigned
in every crude step of time’s arc.

But I know a secret inside
the heart of my heart: come, and listen!
Proud hungry time is caught up in hubris
So I laugh, on this bench in the park.

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Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 4)

Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 2)

Advent Poem: The Season of Emptiness

I remember
last Christmas,
lingering in my mind
midst memory’s fogs
and memories
…just grey mists now,
swirling and coiling
back on themselves,
roiling forward
from the past
and boiling over
into this morning,
this day…

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this time sitting
in the midst of ashes
dead and flat remaining
from that cold conflagration
of becoming thru the fires
of that season.

Friends, job,
name, family,
reputation,
all consumed
by fire,
all revealed as
morsels of the moment
(that lasted 55 years and still just a moment)…

last year,
I had it all
at least in the eyes
of those who don’t matter,
I had it all…especially
the awful yawning
void of nothing
gaping inside
me, most real
inside me,Processed with VSCOcam with x1 preset

I remember
the day after Christmas
reduced me to a place
in the hills adjacent
to the place a woman
took her own life
this year,
reduced me
to screaming incoherence
because I had run out
of words to scream and
I had just begun
to scratch the surface
of what there was
to scream about,
that awful
substantial black
nothing.

that day,
it was a close matter
a razor’s edge tumble
into red greedy flames
burning long and low
all year until
they blazed in fury fanned
when smothering shrouds
were snatched away sudden
in torn and tattered strips
to consume the bribes
and chains of nothing
clothed in costumes.

This Christmas,
nothing has been exposed,
revealed as the imposter
it still masquerades as.
I am empty of screams
but full of me and
ready to receive
the Promise of words
to give voice to
what’s unspeakable, unnameable,
to dress that wound
infected with nothing
and salve it with
the scratchy tickle of truth
and set free we
shadowbound to be
our shining selves,
casting shadows
instead of being flat
and cast by them.

It is the season of emptiness, and places
prepared by pain are hungry
for the Presence
and the Promise
that only emptiness contains.

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Advent: The Healing of the Light King: A Story of Christmas (part 1)

Healing Charissa

“ Grandpa! Please, please tell us a story,” the young children exclaimed.

They were seated in the lap of a man who had seen many, many years. His gnarled, rough hands were like the branches of an oak tree, and his hair was thick and full, and white as snow. His face was a harvest apple in January—wrinkled and browned, but sweet to the taste. He was old as the hills and yet his eyes…full of light and joy, tears and grief, brokenness made whole… they made this old trooper seem like an eager child on Christmas Eve! He gazed down at his grandchildren, Young Frederick on his right knee, sweet Caroline on his left.

“So!” he boomed. “‘Tis a story you be wanting, is it my sprites? Well then! ‘Tis a story you’ll be getting, only then you’ll have to run off to your beds! For tomorrow we celebrate HIS birthday, and GLORY what a celebration we’ll have, eh? Frederick, throw some more wood on that fire whilst Sweet Caroline and I scoot closer to it.”

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Frederick jumped down to obey. The old man rose with his granddaughter under one arm like a kitten, and with a casual flick of his wrist he tossed his huge oaken chair about three feet closer to the fire, like it was made of twigs. He sat down, and Sweet Caroline squirmed up his chest and wormed her arms around his corded neck. “Grandpa,” she said with a solemn face, “Tell us about your journey. Tell us about Him.”

“Yeah!” Frederick chimed in excitedly as he launched himself upon his grandpa. “Tell us about when you were The Light King, and when you went to see Him when He came, and about Gillae and Brownie and—“

“Whoa, slow down my bumpkins,” interrupted the old man. “You’ve heard that story so many times it must be nearly worn out from the telling! Surely you’d rather hear about how your papa, the King, killed the ugly dragon, Ba’alzamon,LK074

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

or about how he rescued the beautiful Princess Katherine
and made her his Queen and your mother?”LK025
“NO GRANDPA!” they shouted in concert.

“Tomorrow ‘s the Day–—His day and it’s your day too, said Frederick.

“Yes, Grandpa,” said Sweet Caroline. “It’s my favorite story, to hear how you met Him and everything. Please, Grandpa, oh please?”

The old man sat looking back and forth between them as if caught deep in indecision. He glared at them in mock irritation while delight danced in his eyes. The children sat in suspense, hardly daring to breathe, hearts straining with desire to hear the magical story.

Sweet Caroling looked at Frederick, and had a giggling fit. Frederick shushed her with an agonized frown and the darkness of the night pressed in through the windows as they huddled close to the fire. The room was full of lamps, all of them unlit and dormant. The fire popped and crackled fiercely. The old man drew in a deep breath, held it, just to build the suspense and then exhaled in mock resignation and secret gladness.

“Oh very well you smooth talkers. The tale is yours for the telling.” Frederick let out a whoop and Sweet Caroline accompanied him with gleeful clapping. “I swear! You two could talk an elephant out of his trunk while making him feel he was the talk of the town for the bargain! Okay then—gather close and settle in, and you shall hear the telling of

THE HEALING OF THE LIGHT KING

He took a deep breath, and began…

Overview and Comments on an Original Christmas Story

Hi Constance…so last year at Christmas time, I published here a long original Christmas story, called

The Healing of the Light King

Clicking on the link will take you to the post in its entirety.

This is the Christmas story written from the perspective of one of the 3 Kings who goes on a journey with the other two, following that brilliant steady star that had appeared.  But the king is dying, from some ailment unknown, and so brings along the supplies needed to bury him in the likely event that he died on the way.  And if he made it, well, he would make those burial spices his gift to the royal personage that the star in the heavens spoke of.  After all, the spices were quite valuable.

Along the way, the king is abandoned by his companions when he has a seizure and they think he has died, and he is discovered laying unconscious in the fields of some shepherds.  They have just experienced some extraordinary events of an unprecedented nature and as they share these things with the king, they discover that their destination is the same place, the same Person, and so they set off travelling together.

They meet this Person, and something astounding happens to the King…and he Becomes…

…well, you will just have to read it to find out, now won’t you?

Here is the killer to me though:  this story moves me as much as anything I have written…ever.

And yet only one person pushed “like”.  And historically?  Other than when I read it out-loud to my kids when they were little, I have never received any sort of response to it!!  No response of any kind.  Not one time has anyone said “omg that is the most boring stupid thing I have ever read”…or “omg that was delightful!”

Nothing.

I even solicited input from readers a few days after posting it here…and what is totes ironic is that the post soliciting comment got a few likes.  Apparently, my plea for feedback was more interesting than the story itself!  But as per usual, no comments on the story.

Hey, I can deal with being told that I sucked and just am a very bad writer…I can deal with hearing that the story needs work and were I to ever to get any feedback on it I would work it in rewrite until it sang.  But apparently it isn’t even bad enough to create even that reaction!!  Giggles…now that is bad!!

Well…screw all that.  I like the story.  It is fabulous, imaginative, inclusive of diverse elements and taps into the Mythos of Christmas.  It touches on the Mystery of it, the Magic of it, and the Majesty of it.  Whether or not I wrote it very well has nothing to do with the story and what I saw when it came to me.

Maybe the problem is that it is a bit long?  It takes a while to read it.  I have heard that the modern mind has a short attention span (makes me so G Damn happy that Tolkien did not write in our day, or I likely would never have read TLOTR because no one would have published it!), and that is one way that I am very much not like modern minds, for mine is convoluted, complex, intricate…my thoughts and ideas take notions, nudges and knowings and weave them carefully.  And of course then there is the whole issue of being guilty of producing too much content.

Whatever.  I am who I am.  I am what I am, and I am not going to apologize for that, any more than the mighty Mississippi apologizes for feeding the sea.  I like the story so…

…so this year, I am going to re-post it here, but just a little bit each day.

Maybe it’s good…maybe it isn’t…who really knows?  But between now and Christmas, I will dribble it out here.  And if you want more?  Well that is the cool thing about blogs…you can go back in time!

Merry Charissa-mas!

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Advent Poem: The Season of Expectancy

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I’m homesick for a Blue Place
that might not be real…
but I know it is.

It has to be!

It floats here,
Azure in my silver
longing heart unsinkable
and it’s scarlet voice calls
from Beyond into beyond,
to that Place
I have never been
but can describe
oh so very well,

down to tittery wine
that brings all joy
but never leaves
hangovers in its wake
and the drippy bread that breaks
crusty with truthful crunch
and fills you up
without filling you out.tumblr_nd3f1fcRM41sktpb4o1_500

Slow down, to open
quick windows 
of awareness
and 
be of thick spiritual health.

Find jubilant quiet Mystery
inside stillness’s expectant embrace,
the only Place that God’s own Face
can safely show Itself, It’s Grace.

God’s Grace, God’s Face,
an infant among us…
Good God with us
(a freaking BABY??!!??!)…
a disruptive Mystery
wedged into reality
and stuck in the craw of dismay.

Where only They can fit.tumblr_ng0upkntmb1sn5m44o3_1280

But Mystery, even a disruptive one
(no…especially a disruptive one!!)
is well worth

stillness,
wonder,
contemplation.

This Mystery is rich enough
to make us stop and wait,
and is poor enough
to catch out all pretenders
greedy for gain alone
and thus lost of soul.

God has stepped into our world
to dig us out of every prison
we disguised as snug burrows
and cozy hobbit holes.tumblr_nepxwwD5ae1t0vssco1_500

Listen.
If you cannot hear it
you will miss it.

Make room.
Divest yourself
of lists and budgets
and endless holiday labor
and fretful commotion and
freeze-dried contentment.

Contemplate
empty your heart
and your hands of stuff,
of chaos, of injustice and
hatred, death and despair.

It’s the season of Expectancy
so heavy in the air, and that is
miracle enough, from there…

from Blue…and from Beyond.

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Myths About Transition Regrets | Brynn Tannehill

Myths About Transition Regrets | Brynn Tannehill.

Constance, I have pressed several articles by Brynn…here is another scintillating one, very informative and helpful in educating those who wish to learn.

As to those who don’t wish to learn, don’t waste your breath there, that is what I am learning!tumblr_nfyhwvKKif1sym2bco1_1280

The main reason that I am pressing this:  it gives me opportunity to talk about regret.

Regrets…oh how they haunt me.tumblr_mumeduCow21qiz3j8o1_500

I regret that some how some way I am distanced from the ones I love most (except for my baby and Them, thank GOD!).
I regret that I have a different understanding and experience of what love and relationship is than they do.
I regret that I then blame myself for this.

I regret that I no longer have any idea what it means to be a friend…the things that I think it means are so vastly different than the things that other people think it means…at least, in the language of deeds…

I regret that there are people who have turned on a dime and cut me out of their lives because they found out I am transgender…and even more who have simply faded away, carrying on as if I have died.

I regret that my pace and that of the rest of the world are so out of sync, so different.  In some ways I wander lands so free and boundless that they seem to never come to an end…and in other ways I am so chained and static and marooned behind prison walls that bar me from my true north place.

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I regret that I feel like anathema to some, and a trophy to others…these two groups are mirror images of each other…neither of them likes me, knows me, but each of them loves to have my pelt mounted to their heart’s wall.

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I regret that I am not a better person.

But transition?  Come out?  Be honest with myself and the world?

Well, I will never ever regret that, and only wish I had found my moment sooner.

God knows the timing of that moment, and just as when the Child came to us “when the moment was perfect”, so too did my moment come.

Listen to me Constance:  if you know someone who is transgender, and they have chosen transition, you can either be a cause of gratefulness, or a cause of sorrow…but your reaction and choices either way will not make them “un-transgender”.  So wouldn’t you rather have it on your eternal resume that you brought joy and gladness, kindness and comfort to the lowly and hurting

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…than have it written of you “this person kicked them when they were down, and helped them to kill themself”?

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This Advent…be a bearer of tidings…

…comfort and joy, Constance.
Comfort and Joy.

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Advent Poem: The Season of Hope

I set off on this journey full of hope.
And wrapped in splendours of belonging here…
or there…it doesn’t really matter there or here
which far exceeds being nothing nowhere
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But as I walked the crowds all fell away
and cruel branches raked across my face
disfigured me and marked me with their scars
my garments stripped and used to block the stars
and so my world grew dim and I alone
and my companions left me trapped within
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The last straw to which I desperate, clung
was dashed from my hands, hope was trashed and flung
to the four winds and blown away in dust,
left me un-moored, an object of disgust.
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But hope is funny, indomitable
and it is sneaky, looking empty, full
and when I dried my eyes, what did I see?
But hope returned to heal and rescue me.

That Absent God so silent and so cruel
had made a move, become the Supreme Fool
and suffered as a lost and lonely peasant
and in absence became Supremely Present

Here, in this fog, everything in shroud
Listen, hear that coming footfall loud
Lion, Lamb and Baby through the smoke
Paying every Promise that They Spoke
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There…wet…thin…starving and alone
that’s me abandoned wet, drenched to the bone
and nothing beautiful, nothing of worth…
to this manger…that’s me…comes Christmas birth

And so I will press on, and I will grope
thru deep darkness in this season of hope.
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Advent Poem: The Season of Reunion

To a meeting long destined,
long remembered and yet
ironically never lived…

well, that is not quite true,
my Heart, T’was lived
repeatedly apart
you in your chamber,
in the air…and me?
Marooned and shipwrecked
here!

Nothing to give except this scrap
of paper brittle…it’s a map
to an island lost at sea
X marks the spot to look
for me!

Yes?  You know where to dig, right?

in the hubbub, hullabaloo,
Reunion waits for me and you…
That towering act of redemption
Resounds throughout all of creation.

so with that in mind…

a perfect advent season
would involve this place
that has this room,
and other corners
full of cushions
and spice piney boughs
(and incense heart bows),
and it would be

a small place so large

where we
would sit,
and sip

(coffee, tea,
you and me, and
writing…writing…

of what could be,
should be
will be

and writing…),

silence would be
such sweet symphony
as voices ancestral
and ancient and future
speak in silken tones sonorous
and thunderous tenors trumpeting,
the old grandmother clock
slowly keeping time

(I am so grateful
for grandmother
who keeps time,
she saves it up

for us, dear)…

and then this room unfolds in space
to wonders in this magic place
of fireplaces stoked with wood
and laughter warm and food so good
and families mingled full and wild
and always watching is the Child
who designated you and me
and whom we love, and that big tree
there, frosted perfect with excess
surrounded with the gifts to bless
each other and to bless Them too

Reunion there…of me and you.

This is my heart’s Christmas wish
Reunion is it’s serving dish.

Love you…me

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Advent Poem: The Season of Enough

It’s the season to journey
to places we know so well
but haven’t been to…

…and now it is time
in this never enough world
to declare the season has come:
it’s the season of enough!

ENOUGH!

Enough of the certified baby so boring,
our “gentle Lord Jesus so meek mild and timid”,
enough of that muffled mage soft-spoken and sage
who wouldn’t say shit even if He’d a mouthful!

Enough of the small household pet of the pious and pompous,
confined to the shelf there beside the wood stove, sat right next to the Hummels
and rolling His eyes to the heavens above, just hanging from
that jeweled crucifix so goddam decorative!

A God
shouldered It’s Way
into the world that day!

A God,
rough and roaring
and wrapped in the skin
of a baby asleep, hidden
here in our world,
stepping down out of Heaven
and into a stable
so filthy and smelly
and lowing with cattle
and held in the arms
of an unmarried mother
who everyone thought
was a loose filthy whore!

This God is glowing and rippling with Power,
pregnant with Presence and poised there with Promise,
This is the Lion come down with sheathed claws
and become the White Lamb with the Lion’s Red Heart
fairly roaring with passion to blow away lies
and to shatter injustice, whip greedy backsides
and to plunder oppressors so Liberty Lives!

Open your ears to the central lone question
of Advent…concealed in this Lion Heart wrapped in a baby…
do we need deliverance?  do we even want it?
do we even know what deliverance is?
do we have a lingering longing for something,
the chance to start fresh, to be granted “do overs”
A Miracle Mulligan of Christmas Mercy
wrapped in the Mystery of the Great Lion
who’s wrapped in those swaddling clothes in that manger
and lying so meek and so quiet, so LOUD
in the silence surrounding this moment of presence
when everything holds its breath
watching…watching…
waiting…waiting…

for the kind of thoughts that expose deception,
and pierce every darkness, shatter hearts of iron
and rewrite the stories of sorrow and loss
into tales of glad tidings and mercy majestic
and Mystery stripped down
and become enough.

Enough.  Yes.

This is the season of Enough.

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ghosts of christmases past

just an ember
in the ashes
in the hearth
in the midst
of a fireplace

cooling off
stones grown cold
in the midst
of a big
empty room

full of sheeted
furniture still
petrified ghosts
frozen in the chill
of indifferent interest

and neglect so still
in the midst
of a house
full of voices
merely echoes

of those voices
long ago
when the ghosts
were thawed and human
and limber in

the room so warm
the fire bright
the stones so hot
and embers glowing
and their skin shining

and their bones throbbing
like maps of knowing
to the way that heaven
felt back then
and where they’d gone

and where they’d been.

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