The poem on the previous page and these four were written for my niece, Melissa, one each year for five years. Here is how the first one started. Melissa was about 15 months old, and we had been out visiting the local library late one wintry afternoon. As we were walking back to my apartment, with Melissa sitting on my shoulder, I felt like I wanted to tell her something about God. So I prayed, "God, what would you like me to tell her about you?". God answered and said, "Just tell her that I am." So I wrote this poem.
What Does God Say?
(Be not afraid. Be still, and know that I am God.)
When I am quiet, when I am still,
That makes a place for God to fill.
He comes to me, when no one knows;
And loves me right down to my toes.
What does He do, what does He say?
God says: I am; that makes my day.
God says: I am; that lets me be,
His perfect, gentle loving me.
God says: I am; that gives me joy,
To be His special girl and boy.
Joy says: I am; that brings me light,
That shines through me, so warm and bright.
That Light, it says: "I am" means Love,
For me to share, from all above.
Love says: I am; that gives me power,
To be Love's likeness every hour.
Love says: I am, so I've no terror,
From any fear or form of error.
Truth says: I am; that says a lot -
That error's really what is not.
Truth says: I am, so when I pray,
Truth chases errors all away.
Truth says: I am; I know it's true,
For me, and Mom and Dad, and you.
Mind says: I am - that my real Mind,
Is ever understanding, kind.
Mind says: I am; that makes my lot,
Become the likeness of my Thought.
Soul says: I am; that makes my goal,
To ever know the bliss of Soul.
God says: I am; I love His law,
It shows that good was all He saw.
God says: I am, and now I say,
How I love God, and will obey.
Life says: I am, and now I see,
The fun has just begun for me.
One day when I was visiting you last winter, we looked out the window and saw Tabby sitting on the deck at your house. (Tabby is a Maine coon cat with a white bib.) It was really cold, with blowing snow. But Tabby just sat with her paws curled under her, looking quite happy in the storm. After looking at her for a while, you said, "Tabby's purring in the wind." I really liked that. Today I wanted to write you a poem, so I remembered what you said about Tabby, and I wrote you a poem about "purring in the wind".
Purring in the Wind
The cold air blew her ruffled fur,
And back her ears were pinned,
But Tabby sat with curled up paws,
Purring in the wind.
It seemed so strange to see her purr
In freezing wind and snow.
Was there something that she knew,
That I would like to know.
Did she purr because she knew,
As flowers follow snow,
That cold wind's for a little while,
And sunshine's sure to show.
Or could it be that Tabby had
A place inside her, warm,
A secret place that always kept her
Safely from the storm.
Or was she simply telling us
A tale that's often told,
That if you really want to purr,
It matters not how cold.
It might have been for all those things,
And even more than that,
It just might be she purred because
She's such a silly cat!
Here is a poem I wrote for you to add to your collection. I wrote this poem when I was thinking about the real meaning of birthdays. When I think about my birthday, I like to think about stuff like this.
This is sometimes a little hard to understand. It might be like a puzzle or maybe a riddle. Can you tell what this poem has to do with birthdays?
There is another puzzle in this poem too. Can you tell why the last line doesn't rhyme, but it still fits. If you find out, you will know where the ideas in the poem came from. (Here is a hint: Ask your Mom to help you using Cruden's Concordance.)
And Happy Birthday!
A Joy I Am
A joy I am so clear and bright
that now I'm shining forth His light.
Possessed by Love before the earth,
My "I am" lived before my birth.
It wasn't time, it wasn't place,
It was the Truth before His face.
Before the earth, before the sky,
Before the heavens, there was I.
By him I was, by him I'll be,
At-one with him eternally.
He brought me up, he taught me well,
He gave me joy, his truth to tell.
So when his word was met with doubt,
He gave me strength to act it out.
I'm daily his, and in His sight,
I know I'm daily his delight.
Rejoicing always before him.
And here is the final poem.
Unawares we entertained them
messages embodied to us
brushed by shoulders strong from flying
strangers in a strange parade.
All around about their business
petal openings orchestrated by patience
droplets from upside-down honeycombs glistening
falling sweet chimes understood inside.
Exchanging gifts with secret tethers
shuttling strands that went before
form the fabric of the morning when
the awful brightness unblinded
seekers in the desert night.
Until our turn comes to let go the ceiling
and fall to earth from heaven
and we are new words for them to hear
and know the author in themselves.
Having followed way past where the road stopped
and you'd have thought the fires were going on forever
but there was nothing left to burn
and, within, you see a child awakening
but you weren't altogether prepared for the surprise
when you found out who it looked like.
Mingling, chatting, clinking glasses
shaking hands in recognition
bond of kinship, clear as crystal
dawning with the family name.
So much school you've finally figured
what's the point and destination
in the mirror now you've seen one
bright as snow it knew your name.
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