I have a doodle to my left. She’s all curled up within herself on our rocker by the window. She’s resting her head on the arm of the chair and drifting peacefully in and out of sleep, while a steady rain falls.
I’m watching her. She could not be more at peace. Her bowls are sitting under the bar, full and ready. Her ‘siblings’ are school-bound so there’s no cute-aggression to withstand. She’s laying on a cushioned piece of furniture, drifting off into the land of dog-dreams.
Timber is a thing of fur. She cleans up our crumbs. She sleeps at our feet. She’s a canine, and yet she has better accommodations than tens of thousands of humans around the world today.
What is one to do with this?
I cleaned up our dinner table after drop-offs this morning, as it had accumulated all manner of papers, golf hats, trash, and drinks from the day prior. I lit a Linnea candle, tuned into a piano playlist I love, and set my writing things down in front of a draped chair. Just before I began writing, I looked through the Gypsophila sitting in a vase at my table’s center, and I saw flames dancing through thin, wispy twigs.
“What could THIS mean?”, I wondered to myself as I captured the scene with my iPhone camera. My immediate thoughts were the same as those I’m having about my pet:
I enjoy such peace and provision while others do not, simply because of where I happened to be birthed on our planet.
I almost blew the candle out. “If they can’t enjoy the dance of flames in a peaceful abode today, nor shall I. If terrors and quakes and fears and dangers are rampant elsewhere, how may I revel in tranquility here?“
But I kept the candle lit, and I opened my computer, and I remembered a very special thing that transpired five years ago across the pond.
I was told, through a vision and a poem, without a doubt or a question, to weave words for those who don’t get to have a word; to be a voice for the voiceless; a “poet laureate”, as Steve Turner* calls it, “for the world that writhes in pain”.
It all seems trite and unhelpful and unproductive and too simple – to just sit here comfortably and tap keys. But it does feel like a calling and so I answer it here today. And I pray. And I continue to look for tangibles.
As I wrap this post, I have a strong sense that telling stories will be the catalyst moving forward – people telling their real-life experiences, people properly reporting what’s accurate, people writing scripts that really speak, shout, and herald, and writers writing fiction that show us what is true. I have no idea what this means, but it’s thick on my mind as I close today.
So, Lord, do what you do here. Let love bring life. Let ideas surface. Show us our assignments. Bring peace where it seems impossible. Protect those in harms way. Provide for those in need. Be evident to all. And gosh, build our faith up in the process as so much seems to be stripping it away these days. Amen.
*Steve Turner wrote a poem called Make Me Poet Laureate. It’s very important to me; a confirmation of sorts. I found it in Myrna Reid Grant’s compilation entitled, Poems for a Good and Happy Life.