the colour of our lives

poetry • celebration • faith • nature • humanity • imperfections • glory

Archive for the tag “christian”

more of the kingdom

this Kingdom is
like prayers in
breaking voices,
rising from
the cracks of a poem

skyit is like
being surprised
by tears in the
of heroic deeds

a rush to the heart
in the fluid slide
of fingers
on silver strings

and a story
bursting like
an excited child
from life-
hardened lips


Some of this was inspired by Marie Howe’s wonderful poem “Part of Eve’s Discussion“. Image © Dan Trewear.


but, the soul

There’s a situation;
Neverman always has
a situation, but he has
no time, no appetite
for Dr Freud
and his learned progeny.

The sages dig deep, no
doubt, but the eclectic
smorgasbord of Jung
does not satisfy, nor
the dry bread of cognition.

Adler’s insight rings true,
and we all fear to drink
the cup of death, but
these things make too
much sense to be of help.

speaker-for-the-deadBut, the soul. Gestalt,
impotent, slinks to the back,
with his weary brothers.
A Presence, huge, electric,
is Leviathan on the table,
carving Himself for the feast.

Still, Neverman aches for
the gifts of Love, while
hiding, vainly, from the Lover.
Heart, torn and planted; a
scion of the tree of Life
springs from the bloody ground.


Image from Some of the last stanza inspired by “Speaker for the Dead” by Orson Scott Card.


of all our internal rules
and private doctrine
few are as guarded as
fiercely, like a shameful
secret, as our attempt
to explain suffering. We
may literally defend this
to the death. To be
wrong is like denying
our sacred texts, discarding
the critical components of
our life’s machine; to
be right: pragmatic; tidy;
shallow, but effective, until
you expose your own pain:
raw, naked, unguarded, and
we all flounder in our hollow

With a silence that looks like grace, you smilingly accept the shields we offer to our own hearts: assurance of greater good; of absolution not ours to give; some practical advice. Our neglect of your pain stifles the part of you that discomforts us; you survive, diminished.

forsaking satisfaction for connection, we drink with you a bitter draught, shed unbidden and unwanted tears. Recognizing the insult in our theologising, we do not discuss higher callings or sanctification. Without reminding you of the idea of a suffering messiah, we become Him, silent companions in your need.

FlounderImage from the Atlas of Living Australia

This year on the feast of the resurrection

This year on the
feast of the resurrection
he makes a plan;
a slow extraction from the
godless halls of the beautiful minds;
a deliberate but passionate
advance towards a life
plucking lost souls from fires, or
nudging the stale and disillusioned
towards Easter’s light.

A rush of terrifying joy;
a choke of unshed tears;
a suspicion of catching
the whisper of divine breath,
join a hope of moving
ever closer to the heart
of things


prayer in the company of strangers

[warning – explicit christian religious content] Read more…


at twelve, or thirteen,
listless, lying on my bed
by the window,
white vapours traversed the blue, a
perpetual evaporation
and coalescence powered
by the southern sun.

with an egocentrism fully
matching my years, I was
squinting clouds from the sky,
imagining other perplexed sky-gazers
left bemused
and wondering.

some weeks later my mother,
rediscovering earnest Christianity,
became enticed by a doctrine
embracing human dominion:
“God has made us so powerful, even
clouds will disappear
if we just pray”,
she recited.

I can still stare down the
flimsier clouds; as the years have
evaporated I squint hard,
still, at devout foolishness
which others gladly suffer;
all but the most Spartan creeds
discarded in search of a
gospel as true as the sky.

the cool of the evening

stained_glass_windowhoneyed sunlight floods through
of stained glass, summer warmth
on hair and skin.
There is a sombre beauty
here; the high-arched windows
glow with eucalypt-filtered light;
a kind and learned voice speaks
of the curses of a
mighty fallen king, of the
import and hope for mortal lives.

If God prefers to be
here, this is not clear;
warmed by the window’s glow,
I see Him incarnate,
leaning full-faced into the falling sun,
soothing the heat of day with the
cool of evening’s Indian Ocean breeze.

Image from Liverpool Parish Church (


He is turning the rock to a pool of waters,
hard soil that now breeds thistle
softening to fragrant loam;
arid and unyielding granite
weathering to supple clay.
Adam’s curse of life and time
dissolved by divine chemistry;
The flint to a fountain of waters!

Psalm 114:8 [1]

Psalm 114


I hope you still smoke cigarettes

When you told me that you’d sold your guitar
and that you didn’t do music anymore
it was like the other little brush-offs of
that afternoon’s conversation except
for the hint or illusion of a blade

Perhaps you’re right: you may succeed at
writing, and teaching, and maybe these are even
higher pursuits to be achieved as a mind of light,
treading softly on the world,
leaving no footprints and collecting no soil.

It’s just that I have this memory of you,
old Gretsch-style six-string in your lap,
sitting on the stage at Hobart’s with Dylan
and the Floyd singing resonant from your throat,
and a calming smoke afterwards as we spoke

Sharing that single cigarette might have been
a sacrament, an act of holy remembrance;
two men of naked flesh and blood caught,
shivering but smiling,
in the hazy awkward wind.

sixteen rhyming lines

A love poem; written for our sixteenth wedding anniversary

In the cool birdsong morning air
you nestled in the bed’s cocoon
only showing copper-gold hair.
Gentle breath-noise sang a tune

that raised in me desire to touch
those shining curls, caress and kiss
your sleep-warm skin. In every such
moment of joy, before we miss

the dawn voice of the Holy Ghost,
I want to hold time forever.
His light is where we see most
clearly; find that we would never

want to leave the human love
that He has given us. Sixteen
years of growing into us; enough
to build a living dream.


i made myself a box and i had
my wife pull me alive from it with a golden
thread and the spirit might have said ‘that’s not
the best way’ and he showed me something
better, that
i would pull her out with a golden ribbon
running through love from
that cage which binds but has
no walls     and this was a better way even though
i was misshapen fallen over and small the tug
from my
heart went through love and
we had her on the other end
almost outside the box now
and ready to jump

so the box? it was true for me and true for
her and i pray
to the father that the knots hold
at either end

A Christmas Verse

There are gifts and non-gifts.

Any exchange bearing a taste of entitlement, or obligation, or commerce is non-gift; true gifts are always surprising, ultimately desirable and given freely.

The receiver will ask, “How can this be for me?”, or say, “This is incomprehensibly generous.”

The giver will say, “I could have only given this to you”, and, “This is the very least that I could have done”.

Any more, or less, is non-gift.

The first such Gift: Life itself.

The second: Freedom.

The third: Redemption.

We deserve none of these; to refuse them is Death.

All other true gifts carry an echo of these three; true giving touches the hearts of giver and receiver and, if only for a moment, they connect two humans at their core, place their hands in God’s, and peel away the inner being’s rusty armour.

Post Navigation