Of the Desperate

Brushing the robe, halting hesitant,

two fingers barely touched the hem—


bleeding pain and disappointment for years and tears.

It was a desperate touch, a face-to-ground, weighted-down touch.

And in the moment He knew, and I knew.

In the jostle of swarming feet, flying dust and flailing pleas,

insignificant me,

me on the fringe,

gripped the fringe of his garment; and in one moment, the tiny thread that held me tethered to life and hope became sacred bonds of the everlasting,

and I was healed.



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Love from Afar

When the prickles and pain of a love held close

hurt too much,

harm too much, then

love from afar with a prayer and a hope

for change,

for time

to heal.

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Contemplation Is Preparation

What people see are externals; physical attributes, profiles and position, passions and power—

or lack thereof.

People see actions and assume motivation;

people see doubt and assume weakness. What people see is not me.

I am more than my package, more than my history, more than my gifts, and

I need to be listened to.

I shouldn’t need validation, but how do I know I really exist if I don’t hear back from the universe I walk in?

Reading alone in a window seat, viewing nature from my perch, writing poetry and capturing all I see in drawings and photos, words that rhyme—I used to think that would be enough. It would be like playing cello on a deck in a wild, ethereal Alaskan wood—no one listening except the trees and sky and creatures hidden from view. Mystic communion with the world.

Romantic nonsense.

Contemplation is preparation—not enough just as is.

If it does not prepare me to worship or serve or commune with others, meditation and creation are empty romantic drivel. And if there is no one to hear, then

the ribbon of music drifts on the air and is just as lost to the cosmos as if it had never been played.

So I need to create, but I also need you.

Are you listening to me?



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After the Grey

Between the ragged jag of mountain and the weight of a helmet grey sky,

there are slivers of light,

yellow and aquamarine,

wisps, vapors, light and air,

a promise of morning after all the grey is done.



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Letting Go

It’s like déjà-done this kind of thing—walked this path before, spouted this script before, destined to repeat over again

attachments and letting go,

hoping and hurting,

again and again,

pushing my rock to the crest only for it to slide back.

Is this punishment for choices made or just the way of things in this place?

Perhaps it’s just part of the deal, so we keep going,

keep trying,

trying to find our way out.


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Shadows Fall

When dark shadows lengthen and pathways clash, we fight our way through,

each on his own,

but not,

bumping others, helping others, avoiding some; and

the destination is beyond this black—beyond these mere pinpricks of comprehension, beyond corrupted flesh, this plaguing weakness, this battle of Hyde and seek.

Shadows fall.

And we press on because there is no going back.

We press in to companions who are sure, until they

are not.

We press out, palms lifted to the One,

begging for a way through.



Psalm 31:1: In You, O Lord, I put my trust;
Let me never be ashamed;
Deliver me in Your righteousness.


3: For You are my rock and my fortress;
Therefore, for Your name’s sake,
Lead me and guide me.


14-15a: But as for me, I trust in You, O Lord;
I say, “You are my God.”
15 My times are in Your hand;

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The Whirring

Pathways of the mind, wandering thoughts, detoured by suffering as much as certainty, and

attention to intention wanes with the onslaught of feelings—

vulnerable, sideswiped—

almost certainly erring, at least in part—and

the thoroughfare of mind-numbing thinking races unobserved behind this placid face and these guarded eyes.

And I would be lying if I told you it was all an exercise in mental agility.

And I would be lying if I said I didn’t care how things turned out or whether or not I solved my own difficulties, as well as the world’s.

And I could be trying to muffle the noise of all these crisscrossing thoughts and intertwined emotions, but this racetrack keeps running, lap after lap,

always seeming to drive nowhere—

nothing resolved, no destination,

but the whirring never stops.


(www.apronheadlilly.wordpress.com = photography too! Filled up here.)

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For Something More

I woke early in the dark and cold with only red numbers projected on the ceiling, confirming that yes, it is early, and yes, it is still dark 04 hundred.

I lie here awake. The pain has been my alarm, and I am so tired,

tired of tired,

tired of it. And I long for heaven.

When you are strong, heaven is an ever-after long time ahead—a warm, fuzzy promise for after I have collected all my joys

and toys

and am done with them, ready to move on. But as time wanes and the body fails,

what I have played with seems much more shallow;

what I thought would last forever is fading fast, and

my perspective is turned to what is ahead rather than what is behind

. . . or now.

And the nice ever after becomes a longing, and the firmly held hope becomes a thing of desperation because if there is nothing more—nothing beyond




the emptiness of Solomon days,

then there is no hope at all. It—

life—energies spent—

will have been the unproductive works of fools. And we will know that as we drift toward annihilation.

Hope makes sense of it.

God makes sense of it all.

Why would violence unsettle us?

Why would unfaithfulness feed bitterness in our hearts?

We might as well cry as laugh—just as well harm as help. Nothing would matter—

and yet it does.

Even those who profess a no-god know we are made for something more.

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My Book of Uncommon Prayers: Power Under

When spin is more important than truth and

winning is more important than loving,

when circling the wagons is more important  than loving the enemy, then

we have failed to be Christ followers—


who did not consider his reputation something to defend,

who did not fight back against mockery and misinformation,

who did not power-over his political foes, but rather

submitted, came under,

to the point of death. If I am a Christ-follower, that is the path I should choose.

Lord, help.

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If I Were

A p r o n h e a d -- Lilly

383 - Copy

If I were a bird, I would soar on wind and wing, taking in a wide world.

No telephone-wire-sitting for me.  I would find the tallest fragrant branch, safe and not unduly exposed, but high enough to have a perspective uncluttered and as big as sky in this beautiful world.

If I were a fish, I would not be a bottom feeder, skimming the dark and dirty wave, breathing in the refuse of the world.

I would glide near the surface, deep enough to be free and safe, but close to the risk of wonder-world–that place of light and color.  I would ease close enough to imagine what that way of living air free might feel like, and I would look and long beyond my watery limitations.

And I would be able to spot a lure a mile away, prey for no one, preying on no one.

If I were a human. …

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