How to write a poem: How to Be a Lit Candle

The following I wrote in response to Katie G.’s request on tips to write a song. I followed these principles and it came out like this.


Start with the feeling, impression, idea, echo of the soul.
Silently be still in that feeling and let the words to start bubble up to the surface.
Gently lay them out and follow where they lead like strands of a spiderweb.
Don’t leave that place or alter the physical state as much as can be helped.
Enjoy the words that come to you, and disregard the words you don’t enjoy.
Ride the glacial wave of creativity until it sets you down.
Proofread it based on the whole of what you have now created.

If you come to a block, wait and see if you can still go forward.
Walk the bridge of patience between the chasm of frustration and whimsy.
Thank God for what He gave you when you’re done.

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Before the Ships Came to Take Them Inland

His kindness never bade them stay for long.
Their welcome was not worn by his being weary.
Instead he gave them hope with every stroke
Though sinking himself into the darkness where they trembled.

The master fixed his own light house
Securely upon truth-rocks carpeted with love
Treasures of the deep rose to see the light
Even if only for a moment to feel the beams of hope it gave.

The island coasted by a sea of trouble
Bid ships on their way pass merrily, warily by
They did not need his light except to know
His rocks nearby could sink them or capsize

The sea creatures knew this lighthouse well
The mermaids frequented the rocks nearby
He gave them music and wonder and joy
And they were gladdened by this caring reminder of sunlight.

Only after basking for a little while, to dive at length
Far from the reaches of his beams of grace
Down into the hole which they could not escape
Where their dark safety was promised in frigid under-water caves

The lighthouse sometimes guided the merpeople
To cast off their fins and scales from their lives
And walk on two legs on the island of Hope
But they even then did not stay long,

Before the ships came by to take them inland.

Ships with sails and steam and steering wheels
Ships that carried cargoes precious to cross the bar
Ships that wheeled their world-wide way
Ships that felt the light, but could not touch the house

The house that kept its lenses burning bright
The house that ocean brine had crusted green
The house that learned the value of its light
By staying on that lonely island of hope.

The island small but never sinking
The island seeing all and never blinking
The island choosing good and not despairing
The island swept by waves of tears and caring.

O that dark clouds may part and let sunshine come out
So the hope of many wanderers may be refreshed
By the light and the warmth of the sun dancing on calm seas
Which is the only comfort this light-bearing soul breathes!

And yet, one day, the hope remains
That the island of hope may have room for two
For two houses to shine yea in two-streamed directions
Kept warm by the fire of the other’s undivided heart.

For now the island of hope is shadowed by grey clouds
The mockery of lightning’s torturous and cold subtlety.
Who will warm the lighthouse and scrub him clean
So the thunder rolling will not cause his own brick to quake?

God’s Restorative Word~ Psalm 19:7

So, last Friday, I didn’t start off my day reading God’s Word. The result was not pretty. I ran around all day trying to do stuff, and it be futile, and trying to plan stuff and it falling through, praying to thank Him and things not getting better.

When I finally got home, I dove into God’s Word, desperate to find Him, and get back to Him. Just one verse,and my flesh was just retching, like a man encased in darkness, who is confronted by a bright light he cannot bear at first. One verse at a time, He restored me. This is what I saw as I wrote in prayer to Him:


Your Word is like a steady diet of meat and potatoes;
You spoon-feed me, and my body convulses as light is tasted again.
O the dark shadows that lick my heart with black flames
Meets a tiny brilliant spark as white as a snowdrop.
And are cast back to their tiny black foothold
Of hurts un-relinquished by my God-hating nature.
The snow drop soothes and bathes my soul
The tears that flow are purified with salt
The embers kindle a bright new flame afresh
And I laugh to thank God for His Good word to me.


Seek His face, and the shadows will be driven away, and the dross will be purged, and the dirtiness cleansed. Seek His face!

A Vision about the Persecuted Church

Yep. Sometimes I have visions. Acts 2:17 is my justification for it. This vision came to me August 11, 2014 in the back room of my Grandmother’s house right before I visited with Grandmother before bed. I’ve heard it said that visions are not always to be shared because sometimes it’s just for the one seeing it to know how to pray. But this is one God has permitted me to share. I do not claim this as orthodoxy. It is a manifestation of artistic reflection upon the nature of the world, the Church, and God. Ultimately, may God be found true and every man a liar.


In my availability
I sought the Lord about evil’s rise.
And at Grandmother’s before our talk.

I asked if We could take counsel.
He said “We can now.”
And I saw with other sight.

I saw the World before me like a globe.
And saw the Darkness spread abroad.
Then a light gathered together,
It was pressed, squeezed by the darkness around it.
I cried out as I understood,
“O Lord the Darkness proves Your glory
You are greater than all Your Word
And what is built upon Your word rebels against you
(It raises its fist)
It proves that You are what You proved to be when victorious
Even the darkness: the light has been tinted,
Even that dark is great, it is not as Great as You!”

In my sitting with Grandmother I considered this,
And drew on the orb, a circle of the light in the dark
The result was the dark inside it turned to light.
Like Joshua surrounding Jericho,
Like Gideon surrounding Midian.
Your glorious light filled the void
Because the Earth is filled with Your glory.
Like the world filled with magma.

I continued to draw circles, and light filled them.
But the darkness retaliated and I saw orbs darken.
Darkness continues to prove its power
The only answer is God Himself.
Not a church, not a word, not a book,
But God Himself.
And Jesus came so that we might take part in God Himself
As the Bride of Christ in communion with Him.
And I am joined with Him, and He entrusts Himself to me.
For we shall be Holy as He is holy.

O God, I am Yours. I look to You.
Let none of it be of me, but You all in me.
As you make yourself known
I worship and praise You.
For my heart is full of Your grace
And it resounds with Praise.

O God, deliver us!
Be our Deliverer
Show Yourself mighty
Show Yourself worthy.
Rescue Your beloved.
Redeem her, yea even in blood.
The blood she readily spills
For the World Jesus bleeds for today.

With humble awe, I marvel at this:
Jesus is still bleeding for the World.

Such is the love of husband and wife
They as one bear love for the same thing.
And the love of the World Jesus feels
Is the love of God and the Church for the World.

O Lord, my beloved are dying!