I wrote this short acrostic poem last night with thoughts freshly stirred by the morning’s first-day-of-Advent worship service. Specifically, I had a melody sounding in my head as I wrote these lines—the tune to which a new Advent hymn has been set by my worship pastor, Matthew Westerholm. The new hymn is called “Tiny Infant, Meek and Holy,” and its tune is that of “Stricken, Smitten, and Afflicted.” This tune’s meter and voice guided my poem. Besides this melody, some of the concepts in the poem came from the new hymn, as well as from Pastor Jason’s sermon on Psalm 38 (“darkened eyes” corresponds to Psalm 38:10—”and the light of my eyes—it also has gone from me”).
by Christina Faye Soukup
Answering dreams where sighs had only
Deadened hope and darkened eyes,
Visits now the infant holy,
Every pure heart’s longed-for prize.
Never fear, my soul, though slowly
The dawn comes, God satisfies.
You’re ONE today, dear ‘Lizabeth!
9 months plus 12 and here we are,
Looking back in thankfulness
At God’s good gift of life thus far.
I’m thankful that he’s given you
To me and daddy; how we feel
Blessed to get to love and lead
An image-bearer, bright and real.
I’m thankful for your morning smiles,
Your bed-head hair that’s growing long,
Your healthy, hungry morning cries,
Your joy in happy morning song.
I’m thankful for your love of play,
Of books, your lamb, and Captain Blue;
For how your curiosity
Dubs all things worth getting into.
I’m thankful for your heart and mind,
For how you’re growing day by day,
For unseen work that’s done inside
When you choose to trust, obey.
I’m thankful that you know you’re loved;
You know my gentle, safe embrace—
And that, in God’s sweet providence,
You’re growing in a home of grace.
Now, on your birthday it’s my prayer
That God will take your life and mold
Your heart and mind to make you new
Until, next year, you’re two years old.
Here’s my last poem for National Poetry Month 2016. While I didn’t make my goal of 30 poems this month, I did set a new personal record with 16. I’m thankful to God for that and for the ability to write at all. Until next year!
What is it to be a friend,
One on whom I can depend?
I will tell you what it is,
What I seek of you is this:
Share my laughter in the light,
Share my weeping in the night.
Share my fight for hope until
Hope compels my mind and will.
Gently tell me what you think;
Do not falsely nod and wink.
Sing your heart song, sing it clear—
Not the tune I’d like to hear.
Take sincere delight in me,
Press me toward what I might be.
Love me for Another’s sake,
Love me when your life’s at stake.
Will you be a friend to me?
Love me with a love that’s free?
Would you if you surely knew
I would be a friend to you?
We all long to have a friend,
One on whom we can depend.
And we long to be a friend,
But we fail and oft offend.
There is One who came to be
Best of every friend to me,
And with mercy, patiently,
Works in me His love that’s free.
Come, let’s learn of friendship from
Him who suffered to become
Sympathetic, faithful, meek
To all those who friendship seek.
Inspired by Hebrews 10:19–39
Sanctified from insincere
Hearts and base conscience,
With a Priest who casts out fear,
We have confidence—
Confidence because of blood
Cleansing us from stain.
Don’t shrink back into the mud:
Knowledge held in vain—
Knowledge of His sacrifice,
Yet you count it vile;
Deeming it will not suffice,
You live as Gentile.
No, instead, trust Him who saith,
“It is finished”—Christ.
Cast yourself headlong in faith
On the Sacrificed;
Confidence will be sustained
By His promise true.
Draw near boldly; He ordained
Grace to come to you.
His own Spirit, full of grace,
Lives in you to show
That, “The just shall live by faith”
As in grace you grow.
Right hand forward, lift that knee;
Left arm—stretch! young escapee!
Rock, and reach, and stretch, and shift,
Zealous in your quest and swift!
In an effort to catch up and finish National Poetry Month thirty poems strong, I’m planning to write many shorter pieces in the next few days. (FYI, Daniel and I set a minimum of four lines of rhyme per poem at the outset of the month.) We’ll see how it goes! 🙂
Wind wailing, rain sounding,
Trees thrashing, thunder pounding;
Heaven brews a perfect storm,
Spilling fury in free-form.
Small things make up great, big things.
Pianos have two hundred strings.*
Oaks will crash with many chops.
Seeds become the whole world’s crops.
*the general range is 220-240
Stained Glass Roses
Stained glass roses grace the light
Flowing to my wearied sight—
Wearied by the cruel, mundane
Ubiquity of things profane.
Holding hope out like a shoot
Pressing up from muddy root—
Oh, this light that calls forth life
In the very heart of strife.
Strife in me, for rest eludes
The sanctuary sin intrudes,
But bud and thorn in glass aglow
Tell of where God’s mercies flow.
Pulsing with the Savior’s heart,
Rose-red wounds, trusted, impart
Peace with God, as does the thorn
For my freedom humbly borne.
The firebrand glows like a carrot
Freshly shredded, only too hot
To touch, let alone to eat—
This orange and smoky form of heat.
To my listening ears a snap!
Crackles, pops of steamy sap—
A giant bowl of crispy rice,
A lively concert to entice.
Burning, ebbing from the coals,
Waves of comfort; heat enfolds
Weary muscles, tired mind;
Cozy up and come unwind.
On Your Birthday, Husband
On your birthday I would tell
How I love you—all the ways
You make my heart with gladness swell
And grace the story of my days.
You’re strong and gentle, comforting,
Like a sturdy, shady tree
Rooted by a fresh, cool spring—
A safe retreat for E and me.
You have a way with humor such
That puts at ease and draws a smile—
A healthy dose and with a touch
Of the absurd once in awhile.
Romantic in your thoughtful speech
And rustic looks and tender hands,
You’ve patient ways of making each
Day special despite life’s demands.
Your striving faith and living hope
Bear testimony to your life
In Christ, and oh, vast is the scope
Of blessing in this for your wife.
So happy birthday my dear friend,
May twenty-six hold varied grace
For deeper joy; may you ascend
The holy hill and seek His face.