geese flying, sunset, image by skeeze, on Pixabay
“All my longings lie open before you Lord; my sighing
is not hidden from you.” (Psalm 38:9)
When I’m worn out and caved in
I love to linger over David’s
promise that God hears my sighs.
David was a shepherd, a warrior,
an outlaw, a refugee, a general,
and finally the king of Israel;
if anyone understood what it meant
to be stressed and weary, David was
the guy. If he says my sighs are not
hidden from God, that means they
are open before Him. God understands
when every fiber of my strength is spent.
What comfort in taking a deep, deep
breath, holding it and knowing God
hears the release. No matter how weak,
how weary I feel, it is a wordless prayer
that restores me.
I was eighteen, he was over eighty,
I stood beside his bed, though he
was somewhere between present
and forever. I hoped my music
might somehow pierce the fog.
He had served the Lord for over
fifty years, but sadly his mind
had retreated to his B.C. days
where unseemly language was
habit and bouts of anger common.
My songs had calmed those storms.
Now I was filling the unknown.
I knew only a dozen chords,
enough to play old gospel songs
and John Denver.
I closed my eyes and sang
his favorite hymn, “Amazing Grace…”
Midway through the second verse,
he sat up, clear as stepping into
the pulpit. He smiled the brightest
smile and sang with me…
“It’s a miracle,” the daughter exalted,
She rushed out to call family.
He sang two more verses with me,
lay back and breathed his last.
His peaceful smile and shining eyes
are etched in the halls
of my memory, like fine glass
with morning light
(Previously published in The Storyteller Magazine, 2017)
LANGUAGE OF GEESE
In the discordant honks
there is a tenderness of speech
uncommon to the human ear.
There is no commander pounding,
Their words are orchestration,
rising and falling notes,
composition for preserving
strength; weakest in back,
the strongest forward.
Their arrow is
a continuous dance
that all will find rest.
And if their language
has a foreign ring,
it is the voice of gentleness,
from wing beat to wing beat,
the words of encouragement
that bear them on.
Mark Weinrich is a cancer survivor, a retired pastor, gardener, hiker, and musician. He has had over 420 poems, articles, and short stories published in numerous publications. He has sold eight children’s books and has two fantasy novels on Kindle.
August 2021 issue