Hints of Heaven

On Returning to Writing


Too long, I cried. Too long!
Beneath the ground
I’ve left this treasure
Buried
Where it could not be found
Or cause displeasure.


In other ways
I thought to please
But found no ease
Until
Like bulbs in winter through the snow
Began to grow
Renewed desire in tender shoot 
Not dead but dormant, taking root,
And drawing from its sweet supply
A richness broad and deep and high
God-given without measure.


For child, you said, You see I give
Not for destruction but to live
Within you
As you draw from me
That what you have others might see
And what you learn others might know
Then feeding from it start to grow,
Breaking the bonds that hold them till,
Conformed in pattern to my will,
Their lives take on the form and grace
Of leaf and flower each in place
And, each in season, bud and fruit,
Seeds without number taking root.
For life I give no tomb can hold
But multiplies a thousandfold
The storehouse of my treasure.


27/2/1992
I’m Loved by a King


I’m loved by a king!
Who would believe it?
A king has given his life for me.
He humbled himself
And suffered rejection
So I could be with him eternally.
He gave up his life
And poured out forgiveness
Took all of my sins and washed them away,
Then clothed me in righteousness
Pure and resplendent
To save me from suffering the price I should pay.


So what can I tell him?
My heart’s overflowing
With thankfulness, wonder, that he should love me.
And what can I give him
How ever repay him
From just condemnation for setting me free?
There’s nothing I can say
And nothing I can give
(No words, deeds or tributes could ever repay)
Except to say, Take me,
Do what you will with me
In all that I am, Lord, have your own way.


c.1990
The Smell of Love


The morning air smells of things past:
grass wet with yesterday’s rain,
sheep’s urine, last year’s leaves
limp like tissue paper,
the woody scent of conifers, 
and from the dark shrubbery
something fresh and clean
like cucumbers cut open.


My lover smells of sea-kissed islands:
sun-warm rocks with lizards darting, 
aniseed, honey, vines, 
pistachios, resin,
olives, wood fires, the cheese of goats,
the soil he has sprung from,
been nourished by,
and will return to one day.


Do I carry scents of my own roots?
damp grass, shaded lanes in summer,
furred mosses, lichens,
mist rising from the moors,
fragrant purple bells of heather,
tree-bending, salt-whipping winds,
mud and puddles touched by
the steady patter of rain.

2010