CHECK THE SCIENCE: BEING TRANS IS NOT A ‘CHOICE’

I am posting this for those readers who still may not understand the complex physiological and psychological factors that work together to form our gender orientations.

In light of the fact that the Bible is utterly silent regarding the so-called “morality” of gender, this article could be especially helpful for those of you who claim you love Jesus and yet treat transgender humans like Hell.

May God spare you the kind of treatment that you have handed out to others in the name of Jesus…but that is not how it works, is it?  The fact of the matter is that the exact standard that you employ to show your rejection and hate of transgender humans is the one that Jesus will hold up for you on your day of dawning…

http://www.ozy.com/pov/check-the-science-being-trans-is-not-a-choice/69726?utm_source=aah1&utm_medium=cpc&utm_campaign=pp&utm_content=inf_17_92_2&tse_id=INF_0b1151f026b511e7ab1b4bd69f1788b7

My Offering Of Violent Worship

Born transgender…
concealed…
in rushes, in tulies
wandering deserts
and walking lonesome valleys…

and we walked around the sun
50 times, spinning, circling
while I, spinning and circling
spiraled out of myself

torn in two
or maybe parted
by Solomon’s Silver Blade
my inner me stifled and screaming
“Give Her Away! Give Her Away!”

as he just shrugged and said
“I don’t wanna be here anyway”

but then to come to myself slow
trickling back home
and draining up and in
before coming out

the sun so bright
the wind so fresh
creation dancing

and the stink of hate and horror
and the sting of brutal spittle
and eyes that bruise and stab

and the cries of the powerless
and the silence of the othered
and the dust of death settling

I dance, I sing, I SHOUT!
I whirl and lift that dust to the wind
as my offering of violent worship
of our Liberty God, Our Graceful GOD
our LOVING GOD

and I hear Their loving strong whisper:
“For such a time as this you were created”

and I take my place with Ester
and take Mary of Bethany’s hand

and settle into this truest truth for me:

“My maids and I will fast likewise.
And so I will go to the king, which is against the law;
and if I perish, I perish!”

Where The Light Passes In

Do you know the place where the light passes in?
That’s where you’ll find me when darkness is seeping
from crevice and cranny while Spring trudges weeping
I sit in the place where the light passes in.

You’ll find me there singing of beautiful life
and of faith like pure gold burnished shiny with hope
as my tears fall like diamonds so soft in the wind
In that place where the light, where the light passes in.

Listen…you barely can sound out the echoes
that buzz in the trees and bounce off the crags
and run back and forth from my mouth to my chin
In the place where the light passes in, passes in

It’s tempting to think that I never have lived
a sad day or a bad day when dark gathers grim…
But I have…what’s the secret? Outside and In?
Why I let the light pass thru, and out, and then in…

I’m the place where the light, where the light passes in.

The Fog Like Still Joy

the fog gathers, nesting
over the deep quiet glen
dialing down sunlight
damping every sound

in this gloam my supple soul
nestles in, gives up control
and ceases struggle to be good,
or important, or subtle

and she feels the fog like still joy.

if you wish to care for the soul
you must decide it matters
more than human life
and simply know…still

 

To The People I’ve Lost Over This Election | john pavlovitz

My friend John Pavlovitz says it best…again


The first thing I want you to know is that I don’t celebrate this separation. The distance has come with a great deal of grieving. It’s come with heartbreak at the realization of the impasse we reached and the fractures that resulted. This is not something I take lightly or rejoice at all in, in fact it is a profound loss and defeat—and certainly not what I’d have planned or preferred a year ago.

Having said that, I also want you to know that I can’t fully regret the present distance between us either, because in many ways—it is simply what has to be. There are truths that we have learned about each other this year that are too elemental to dismiss or overcome right now; things at the very core of each of us that feel incompatible, and as much as I regret that I’d regret my silence even more…

Source: To The People I’ve Lost Over This Election | john pavlovitz

Our Sacred Desert Story

We set out on tender feet
and tender hearts to match
and faces become flint as we
determined that we would not faint.

When our sojourn was hip deep in heat
and we were well and away, out to sea
she told me of the heartbreak and the horror
and there how we did rain our tears…

We took turns (while we wiled the desert paths away)
swimming away from the ship of us…naked, vulnerable
and healing in the slick water…further and further
and then return and up and back into our desert ship.

It was in the sunset wrought with haze from distant destinations
that make you think about fire, and about what might have been.
We, perched on that rock solid emanating heat and spitting healing
while the sky, bruised by our advances, turned purple in our song.

It was just Day Umpteen Kazillion in our great traverse of deserts,
we walking, swimming straight by myth and extraterrestrial,
feeding on lizards, trilobites, and our sacred Stories our Communion shared
and we, oh so close to our arriving, our becoming, our sacred Desert Story.

 

The Land That I Haunt

Simple, slow
embodied in sinew
and oiled with sweat
traversing territory
between the heart
and the mind…

this is the song of the strong soaring soul
this is the song of the wind in the night
this is the song of retreat into wholeness
this is the song of those swaying stars swinging

in the midst of the tumult of hurried compassion
dwelling in antipode virtue of soul
mired in distant connection called intimate
sucking the bloated cold teat of efficiency

this is the loss of the soul…

and what of me?

I am not quick, yet
I move like the lightening
singing and zinging and sizzling bright
kissing the stars and empowering earth

this is the land that I haunt with my life

Resurrection In Purple Flow

Sometimes when
I am in the presence
of the royal mountain

I can’t help myself.

I run purple, violet
I feast on fallen blossoms
(somehow the fallen sing more
of loss, of all that comes before

Resurrection
in purple flow

The unlikely Texans fighting anti-trans bill SB6 | Fusion

For all who want to:
A:  Understand transgender issues and origins
B:  Want to be allies in the granting of human rights
C:  Believe that being a christian precludes hateful condemnatory behavior
D:  Have a trans loved one(s) that you wish to support

This article is for you.

I personally have experienced every single thing mentioned in this article.  As a full grown middle aged human…the loss of family connection;  the loss of employment;  the loss of social standing, the hate-filled behavior towards me of literal total strangers; physical violence…

…not to mention the sort of thing that happened when I was little, and my choice of dissociation from myself.  Only God can ever really measure that damage done as a child…damage that was not “intentional” but was fully empowered by the cultural forces of the binary and thus did no less damage.

This mom literally tried all the things that transgender rights opponents espouse…read her story.  A conservative christian family with bona fides that may well make St Paul’s head spin!  The accusation that parents’ poor parenting is responsible for the “mental illness” of the child is revealed as the false belief that it is.

This child is amazingly strong and persistent.  I did not have that strength…I caved…and nearly died for the next 50 years.

All this damage, all this death…all because of clothing, genitalia, and bathrooms.

And trump supporter?  Please pay special attention to the reporting of the trump administration’s specific and deliberate plans to take away transhuman rights!  Just exactly as I told you.  Supporting this absolute fucker taking office is the deliberate empowering of someone who wants to hurt me…

as if you could what…beat the trans out of us?  Pray it off of us?  Be sure and notice in the pull quotes below the full grown relative who vows to send this little kindergarten kid to the hospital on a stretcher if that child was in a restroom that his 22 year old niece was in!!!

That is literally flabbergasting to me!  Really!!???  What is a 5 year old child gunna be able to do to a 22 year old woman??

No matter how many…no, even if you slaughtered every single transgender person?  We would be back in the next generation…because we are a function of human reproduction, and not a function of “social engineering”

Kai and Kimberly Shappley in the backyard of their house in Pearland, TX
Kai and Kimberly Shappley in the backyard of their house in Pearland, TX

“…No matter how much punishment this kid got, you couldn’t beat it out of her,” Kimberly said. “You couldn’t pray it out, I couldn’t cast it out.” Indeed, Kai was having none of it. Sometimes she would wait until Kimberly was on the toilet to taunt her from just out of striking range: “You know I’m a girl.” Other times, she began praying within her mother’s earshot that God would “let Joseph” (Kai’s former name) “go home and be with Jesus.”

Kai’s prayer was Kimberly’s breaking point. That, and learning about the sky-high suicide rate for trans kids; according to one study, 41% of trans youth had attempted suicide—a rate almost ten times higher than their cisgender counterparts.

“There are so many trans kids who don’t have her persevering, persistent spirit,” Kimberly said. “And if Kai didn’t have that spirit, I would have succeeded in breaking her, into conforming into what I was trying to make her be. And we would have all been ok with that until she killed herself, at 14, or 13, or 11, or 20, or 50….

“…Still, the social fallout for Kimberly was swift. Trans advocates often say “everyone loses someone” when they transition; Kimberly’s family lost almost everyone. While one of Kai’s uncles helped his niece pick out new outfits, most of her extended family distanced themselves. One aunt threatened to call CPS on Kimberly. Other relatives shared a Facebook post from a Houston-area preacher, proposing a training day where the church would teach children how to spot and report trans kids at their schools. A cousin sent Kimberly a Facebook message warning if he ever saw Kai in a bathroom with his 22-year-old daughter, Kai would “need a stretcher.”

“A best friend from the family’s church, where Kimberly served in ministry for years, stopped their years-long 5 AM prayer phone calls. When Kimberly attended a school board meeting last June to discuss the accommodation of trans students, she said one pastor from her church showed up to speak out against them…”

Source: The unlikely Texans fighting anti-trans bill SB6 | Fusion

A Disjointed Incomplete Meditation…

This is talking about my own life, my own family…and yours, too…because all of us have this brokenness.  The evidence is irrefutable.

This poem is all about forgiveness…trying to give it and trying to receive it…and the incredible revelation that it is impossible.

There is no trying…there is only becoming.

“…And so now we get down to it:
there is no exit,
no escape from agony,
pitstop from pain…
all we can do is
exchange suffering’s form
and it’s face, from our own
for the pain of another…”

Source: A Disjointed Incomplete Meditation…
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When Words Are Written Here

there, in clouds and nothing but clouds
above and below as I…walked?  Or did I
swim, or fly, and in the distance
hearing songs of you…and clouds

obscure and yet they also part
and thru the silver mist She came…
Her Heart and Ears and Eyes (the singing)
stilled and still and still She came Singing

and in this cloudy parting is the only knowing needed
that I am Her child, Her emissary
sent to bend what thinks itself straight
and straighten what is broken, bent.

Me the paper, pen and ink
Mama, unsayable, beyond the think,
the clouds, the parting, emerging and wordless
song…and She the emerging and yes

the clouds parting

when words are written here

 

After A Disdaining Blue Jay

Chilly Morning stretches
night-swaddled wings
(damp in the dawn)

In the frosty filagree
from the handrail
of the back deck
a Blue Jay disdains
the silent feeder
with two quick breaths

puff puff
A galaxy birthed twice
in blue breath

and floats off

in the cold
silent air

in the
morning light

In The Slanted Dust

Language straining paralytic,
thrashing around in a kerfuffle
of dust and cant and sorrow…

exhausting itself and
still and side by desperate
side with Experience…

As Melody
eludes the lack
of knowing hands
delicate and stands
free and unfettered
and still a Mystery
to Language, to
Experience

Ears made for melodies
run to dance and spin
in the Slanted Dust.

Not My Poem…But Yes, Mine

Trumbull Stickney – “Song” (poem)
Song

A bud has burst on the upper bough
(The linnet sang in my heart today);
I know where the pale green grasses show
By a tiny runnel, off the way,
And the earth is wet.
(A cuckoo said in my brain: “Not yet.”)

I nabbed the fly in a briar rose
(The linnet to-day in my heart did sing);
Last night, my head tucked under my wing,
I dreamed of a green moon-moth that glows
Thro’ ferns of June.
(A cuckoo said in my brain: “So soon?”)

Good-bye, for the pretty leaves are down
(The linnet sang in my heart today);
The last gold bit of upland’s mown,
And most of summer has blown away
Thro’ the garden gate.
(A cuckoo said in my brain: “Too late.”)
– Trumbull Stickney, 1874-1904

“Song” Notes

  • a linnet is melodious songbird finch
  • a runnel is a narrow watercourse
  • a gold bit mown is a field of hay

A Different End To The Story

This is about an event that happened last year…a full grown male human who exercised his power and privilege over other humans who were utterly powerless against him…UTTERLY POWERLESS.

Come to think of it…it fits the absolute fucker, trump, as well.


All full of himself and stiff
gait wobbly, bopping up and down
walk waggly, blipping circley side-side
aggressive lean forward looking
for something to pierce, to rip

pent up all day inside the clothes of decency…

Source: A Different End To The Story

My Vibrant Words

Another work from last year…I really like this poem!


it’s strange, how my words
are vibrant now, and safe…

my words are safe in themselves

they used to need your eyes
like vines need their trellis
eyes constant and seeing
and singing in the wind…

Source: My Vibrant Words

Blue There Living

The recent poems I published are my first since my surgery.
I find them quite informative to my rambunctious mind.

They jumped up, arms raised, excited small children
who wish the teacher would call on them, thus
sort of birthing them into the soft pure
air of truth, astonished at the blue
blue blue there,
living
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The Edge Of Truth And Wonder

when I happened
upon this floating
basket run
aground there, on
the edge of water

and land, the edge
of full and empty
the edge full
of sky and space

I wondered
about who had
taken the child
who laid there in

the basket, in
that place and in
the edge between
those flowers gathered

in the edge
of truth and wonder

Roses out of Ruins


She walked, head held high
like a servant who pilfered a sweetcake
from the grouchy old cook
(who ruled her kingdom with iron,
a slave who fancied herself sovereign).

She took their glances, their …

Source: Roses out of Ruins

Miriam’s Song

A poem from 3 years ago…seems appropriate in light of the marches!


Roll back stormy waters, roiling steely dark and deep.
Roll back clinging finger-waves and the icy grip they keep.
Make a way thru waters where there isn’t any way
And lead me laughing, walki…

Source: Miriam’s Song

In Arpeggio Miles

Ohhh CONSTANCE!!  I have been transcribing this poem for a friend, the lovely Michelle Terry (Hi Grl!!)…and I fell in love with it again.  Aaauuggghh!!  I LOVE THIS POEM.

It’s about an evening that plays out between two hearts, two souls…it plays out between The Earth and Space…it plays out between waters and land, and heart and bodies…it plays out between Love and Lover and back again…it plays out between the carnal and the ineffable…desire and Desire…

it plays out between where it happens and where It Happens…

And Subjects…The Divine and Human, Self and Self, Self and Subject…

I like my metaphors and use of them…I like the references and hints dropped.  I like the movements, from Prelude to Finale.  It is sensual and spiritual all at once, and it still feels really good.

Some critics have told me it is too long…perhaps they are right…but I allus ask them what do they expect me to do about that?? For I have about as much say over how long it is as I do how tall you are!

If you’re a new reader and dabbling, I hope you will take a run…   ❤

In Arpeggio Miles

Prelude:
There is an indigo bunting
outside my window singing
in the moonlight streaming by
a million miles an hour.
But it is not the window
on my mind tonight…
I keep returning to that door…

Source: In Arpeggio Miles

Sonnet Of The Phoenix (For JD)

Oh Holy Lightning Strike like Griffin Swift
upon this yearning heart in desperate need
of Your Mercy Severe, Your Holy Gift
Give us Grace to Find the Phoenix-Way!

To rise in faith from Ashes and from death
to self and self reliance, come what may!
On resurrection wings and Spirit’s breath
alive again and all is well this night

that breaks and shatters with the rising dawn…
and not a single fire road in sight,
and what will be well it shall simply be
and what will not be well it will be gone!
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Come Holy Fire, we answer Your Call!
and All Reborn, and Love is All in All,

“Someday…someday the snow will fall!”

Dread and Presences

I am reblogging this poem from 2 years ago…here is the key passage:

“I step to the rail and look back
peering intently into the fog
thick and lingering,
but 2014 is shrouded, hidden
and if I hadn’t lived it
I wouldn’t have believed it
was anything more
than a dream.

It was a year that hollowed out
thinned out, emptied out
but never declared its intention.
I don’t think it ever knew
or if it even could…”

Charissa's Grace Notes

Dread.

I feel it still.
Laying at the base of my throat and throbbing
dully, quietly slumbering with one leering eye
cocked open always and leaning towards my heart.

My heart…
chipped and worked, touched and chilled
by the frozen fingers of dread

and shards of it lay scattered at my feet
clear, jagged glimmering
broken.tumblr_nf01s3Hemc1sjr8bdo1_1280

I step to the rail and look back
peering intently into the fog thick and lingering,
but 2014 is shrouded, hidden
and if I hadn’t lived it I wouldn’t have believed it
was anything more than a dream.

It was a year that hollowed out
thinned out, emptied out
but never declared its intention.
I don’t think it ever knew or if it even could.

It was a year without windows
but many doors
and ladies
and tigers.

There is more to life than meets the eye,
more than can be measured by the senses or a census
but this morning there is just the fog behind
and…

View original post 115 more words

This Brilliant Indifference


I am a childe of dark, a childe of light.
I was born beneath the shining moon but just outside it’s golden touch there, on dim green meadows blanketing the warm red earth
in comfort midst the…

Source: This Brilliant Indifference

Between the Lines

I need to repost this poem from a couple years ago a day early…and I don’t even want a SHADOW of eyes on this that aren’t willing to LABOR today to birth understanding of what I am writing about…

it’s so fucking obvious what I am writing about…

I am writing about what we are all mealy mouthing by blaming it on a specific year (as if the year were a shambling zombie…as if the year were different than any other year, as if WE were not the shining difference every goddam SECOND)…

but every single person SHOULD labor with this poem, and labor HARD…

cus it’s the liturgy you will need as you’re pulled inexorably to your end…

if you DO decide to click on this…then really get your hands into it, and don’t go looking for pretty words and cutesy lil poetic kuans…cus this aint it.

This is the blood of a Poetess…

this is the stuff of poetry, however poorly executed it is in my fumbly arthritic heart whose joints ACHE and SEETHE with rage at death and grief at the ways we pull our snugglies around us and pretend…

Jenniferlittermate, there will be much balm for you here, you are indeed ready.

“…and there I walk, alone between the lines,
my feet upon the ties, the ties that bind
and my heart ponders lines, and ties and spaces
in between the lines, the ones inside of me and what is hidden
there to see by those who stop and look and listen

…and take the time to read between the lines…”


Tree-lines mark the end of alpine meadow-frolics green
and the start of stone relief against the ever-constant skies
stretched out in steely greys and stellar silver blue sky-lines,
and space between the lines…

Source: Between the Lines

The Poem “Just”? 


Hey dear ones… Has anyone read “Just“? It’s posted a day or so ago… Not a like or comment… Does it suck? Is the homophone play just too much?

I’m curious, cus this was birthed in that lil flurry of poems regarding time… But just was not singing enough… Until I saw a tie to time and diminishment and justice cutting up and down that continuum…

You can take out the word just… And it limps along off-balance… A commentary in itself…

Just

tumblr_njvutgPhdF1qdunk8o1_500I just strive so hard just to remember,
just remember what I just now said,
just remember what I’m gunna say
and just said and just say and just said (and just say).

and your mind just strains hard to recall
what you’ve said, what you just mean to say
and then just reaches forward so quickly
to grab onto what you’ll just say next.

Mem’ry just pulls against expectation
twin sisters just trapped within time
like quick pagan twin versions just jumping
just like virgins, or just like Three Graces…
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they just melt in our faint grasp completely
fleeing ere we can touch them, just gone
in that moment just blooming, becoming
we just clinging tight to a mere echo,

to a faint rumor lurking, just lingering
an arroyo called ‘Just Vanished Self’
and that rumor just leads me to moments
of kindness, just unmeasured time

elemental unfettered just kindness
that settles, in just quiet knowing
just a knowing so gentle and tender
of my heart’s every deep just desire
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and a time of just tears just like rivers
rushes just to the ocean of being
just to wash mem’ry, anticipation
(they’re just one and the same all the time)

I just witness my fiery capacity
to just love but it just strains its tethers
to long splintery docks, just grey time
that prevents me from leaving, just sailing

on that lake singing just of the ocean
of just being…being..just in time
just unbound, just free in my just joyful
Beginnings…just joyful…become
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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 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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A Triptych On Time

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https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/18/i-tell-time/

https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/18/if-winter-really-comes/

https://charissagrace.com/2016/12/18/a-sylvan-sound-so-sleek/

These all three go together and speak of the three aspects that we impose and make regarding time

A Sylvan Sound So Sleek

Sit quietly
Close your eyes
Like one who wakes
from a long sleep
a com(m)a

Listen to the
trickle of time it’s
a sylvan sound so sleek
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and flowing around you over
you and below you, above
you and in you and
in you and in
you in time

Open your eyes
Look up into
a clear sky
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Try to see just
How high or deep
is a hundred feet
or a mile long

It’s just you in time
(you know) and time
in you (know time)

and never the twain
shall meet or part
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If Winter Really Comes

whatever
hour or
minute

this is

how it feels
to inhabit time
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swift
creakly
slick
deeply
intimate
infusing
every slippery word
or graceful gesture

light and darkness
make their sound
and give birth to time
and time and time
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just flies away,
just passes by,
just exists (no) more

that’s what time is now
that’s how little time
I have to do all
the things I am
thinking about

if winter
really
comes.
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I Tell Time

Some nights seem slippery,
more than I like, lately
maddeningly abstract
yet deeply intimate,
infusing every
word and gesture…

and breath
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I wake to the sound
of dark, without detail
underanemptysky

or maybe
underground,
in a cavern or
falling thru space
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I might be dreaming
I could be dead.

Time moves one direction
but I move all directions
and take time with me

I tell time
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Her Own Vampire

She was divided, rent
and torn to pieces
clinging to night
in the brunt
of day

she swirled
and melted down
outside

lying in coffins,
in caskets

(her heart her soul)

so black, beneath the dirt
so red inside desire
so bright and filled
with longing

she was her own grave
and when night fell
the earth moved
and trembled

and her brown-streaked
and desperate hand curled
into a claw carrying
crescent moons of dirt
deep beneath haunted
and hungry nails

as she undead
to her ownself
rose from the grave
to wander in
the night
reaches

she was her own vampire
diminishing, growing all
at once becoming
and draining

herself into

Herself
tattoo, body, and girl image

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

The Big Books Of My Longing


In the Big Books
of my longing

the pages

(fresh bread fragrant,
full, and beckoning)

speak of other
days and other
worlds hung in
Mystery Skies…
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where Winter walks
in sleighbell slippers
and flashes snowflake
teeth in starlight,

teeth gleaming
in teeming flurries
dancing furiously
frivolous and fancy
free…
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reaching to me
inside my room
in the Big Books
of my longing

and pages rustle
like wrapping papers
and chestnuts pop
so merrily,
clicking their
Christmas tongues
tsk tsk tsk…
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and She,
Lady Winter
in furs of hearth
and home, underlaid
with ermine fires
like brown-tinged
liquid gold, furs and
white hot coals inside
Her Heart so cold…
so Warm…
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It’s just outside
my window pane

(and glowing
in the pages too)

in the big books
of my longing…

Look!  And see how
even in Her Presence

(Her very Presence!)
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In Her Presence
ducklings sneer
at that name called
Frozen

and quacky laff and
swing a wiggly waddly tail
and burst in shattering wings
that break the pond-limit water pane
once so still and now awash in
ripple-tizzy ripple run
tum tum tum
pum
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just outside
my window pane

they break
with earth
and rise
revealed
just ducks
of quacky
laff at regal
August Winter
in December…
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while
the swans,
contrapuntal
in becoming
also rise
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(like the
floaty moon so
silverlight in
revelations
of duck
and dirt
and
common
clay)
The moon rises behind the Dorje Lakpa Mountain as Swayambhunath stupa is seen in forground in Kathmandu, Nepal, Monday, Nov. 14, 2016. The brightest moon in almost 69 years lights up the sky this week in a treat for star watchers around the globe. The phenomenon known as the supermoon will reach its most luminescent in North America before dawn on Monday. (AP Photo/Niranjan Shrestha)

Swans,
become stars
swimming thru still night
and singing all Her praise
and shining gracefully
on gliding wings…
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in the Silent Singing Snow

and
every
sound
echoes

my heart
inside that
just outside…
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just outside
my window pane
and the Big Books
of My Longing

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.
New Covenant

Forgotten Beauty

I have not forgotten beauty
gleaming in the rim of gathering dark
sounding in the crying of the snow geese
hiding in the cross cries of the storm
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and rain races thru the air
in darts and stinging slaps and snaps
to light upon my eyeslashes
to kiss my tippy nose

and I hear deep within the earth
the sighs of slumber, sleepy breath
and turning from this seeming death
when winter races strong

(and yet cannot
NOT be beautiful)
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and so I walk the edges here
between the sea and sky and sand
and look for that pink glimmer
of that shell, that alabaster

moment, that holds
and does not break
at least not yet,
for I have not forgotten beauty.
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Big-Hand Little-Hand Me

and what, Mama?
You turned me inside out
so red, so dark, a cave…
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an old sock wooly
on the outside,
and yet hollow
and full of things
yet held…
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and yet the holder
of a galaxy of galaxies!

You took my emptiness
and filled me with Yours
which aches with the pregnant
potentiality of it all.
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what am I gunna do
with this new ache
You gave me?

You reach
and grant that grace,
that terrifying removal
of veil and valence and vector…
and this new and bracing ache
remaining behind like
a lost tooth in my
heart’s mouth.
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I went to that mat of death
alone and yet surrounded
to discover that pile of me,
I bone of my own bone…

what gain was there?
what loss endured?
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my mouth stoppered
my eyes covered
ah but ears so open-wide
to hear the death song sung
so slow and yet so steady
tock-ticking its way round

that twisty path to me
laid there like a circle…
my big-hand little-hand me
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We Happy 15 (A sending poem)

Ya know, even Jesus,
being a dude and all,
didn’t get it!

He thought He
could do it all
with just 12…
and Himself of course!

L. O. freaking L!!

What else would you
expect from a man?
largeThey always think a few inches is a ruler!

“Hey buddy, suck it up Bro!
Rub some dirt on it
Call it good”!

Umm…yeah no.
We know different,
am I right?!?!

Every woman knows
it takes 14
to make a goddess!
A living zesty busty

hippy jazzy sleek

fat hale hearty

slick  and

slippery

oh so yummy

JUICY LUCY GODDESS
made of us…we happy 14.
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Our Hearts have twined,
our souls have moved

And Mama, She poured
out Her glue

until
We have

elided, danced
and birthed and
been born US!!!
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goddess awake and so divine
and we decree our ministry:

the mission of the Broken Pot
forever pouring, ever filling

ever loving, ever willing
always welling upward welling

HEALING

Then?  Mama Herself
presses in and on to us
(We Happy 14,
extension of Her face,
Her mask created!)

And caps this Broken Pot of wee
with Holy Trust and Sacred Mercy
running burning everywhere

1+2+3+4+5+6+7+8+9+10+11+12+13+14

And Mama…

We Happy 15
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Six Word Memoir (Seven Examples)

From fire
and ice
I’m born

Come On In!
the Water’s fine!

from the ashes
I have risen

I’m Mama’s Girl…
Just ask Her!

I am a
Selke
of Shalom

my bones
call the
goddess you

You ask me
why I laugh
^
|
(insert a comma after “why” for double entendre)
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In Blood & Bone (A Seven Line poem on “Earth” Day)

It is looming, dark and leaning in, this Winter

     and its ancient song echoes in blood and bone.

          It pulls down Blue from frozen skies…

               While perched nearby a wizened crone…draws breath

                    and tosses her gleeful cracked chanson in cackled tones

                         that run and roll like casting bones…that dance and then…still

                              and winter, song, blood and bone and ancient crone…are one.
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