Poem For An Endangered Planet

(On the occasion of the 2019 U.N. Climate Change Summit)

SCRIPTURE FOR THE DECREATION

Let the white bear hunt a new home.
Its home hold no memory of place.
Let the swelling bellies of oceans sink shoreline
in wild jaws of hurricaned bays.
While hurt whales weep for the coral collapsing
like dust.

Let burning eyes fix on red embers of forests.
The black soil abandon scarred fields.
Let heated plains harden like crusts of old bread
and blossoms cry out for the bees.
While hope fails in houses on highways surrendered
to dust.

Let the meltwater mountains go numb in their nakedness.
Let wind wail the dirges for earth.
In the snap of the bones of the shattering ice sheets
let listeners at last learn the words.
While birds ask of butterflies stricken, directionless
as dust.

Then let those who can, when rain pounds like punches
and marshes march into city streets
to meet rivers gray with the gathered grief,
stagger from stunned vehicles,
cross the drowned doorsteps
and recall, as the split wood its tree,
that they are dust.

Copyright ©2019 by Andrew King

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Poem For The Sunday Lectionary (Pentecost +10, Yr C)

SONNET FOR AN UNFINISHED GROWER
(Isaiah 5: 1-7; Psalm 80: 8-19)

She steps among the briers and the thorns,
her grieving heart unsure of what she’ll find.
The ruin of what once were luscious vines,
the wreck of so much love: it makes her mourn.

Here and there among the tangle of weeds
a lonely vine still shows, and small clusters
of green globes defiant; and she musters
hope that it can be saved. She knows the need

will be for sweat and toil and tears, love’s pain.
She sighs, her bent knees touch the soil, fingers
reach and tug. Is thus how God’s love lingers
to till our hearts and tangled world again?

Perhaps this vineyard yet can grow as meant
the fruits of justice, leaves of peace unbent.

Copyright ©2019 by Andrew King

POEM FOR THE SUNDAY LECTIONARY (PENTECOST +9, YR. C)

THIEF
(Luke 12:32-40)

“If the owner of the house had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let his house be broken into. You also must be ready, for the Human One is coming at an unexpected hour.”

Break in, O holy thief.

Break into our guarded home.
Defeat the locks we fasten
against your love.

We brick the gates against justice.
We slam the doors to loving.
Our window drapes are heavy and pulled
to block the light of your peace.

O thief, break into our fortress.
Come while we doze in complacency.
Come while we sleep in our negligence.
Come while our eyes are closed to the world
that so needs us to change behaviour.

Break in.
Break in, and bring the poor in with you.
Break in, and bring the stranger.
Break in, and bring the challenges we fear,
the ones we would rather ignore.

Break in, O thief, break open these hearts
that should have invited you
long ago.

Copyright ©2019 by Andrew King

Poem For The Sunday Lectionary (Advent 3, Yr C)

I THE STONE
(Luke 3: 7-18)

I am stone, hard, unpolished, rough,
trying to claim special favour and place.
O Lord, can you change my flint heart enough
that it become a fertile field for grace?

I am the tree whose raw fruit often proves
to be unsweet to others. Can you take
your love’s blade to my selfish roots, move
me, graft your grace into all that I make?

I the grain shell-bound; any useful seed
hidden in me, Lord, requires your sifting.
Will you remove my chaff that I might feed
your hungry, any whose heart needs lifting?

Yes, bathe me, flame me with your love, I pray,
that, by your Spirit given life anew,
I may light bright fires of your sacred praise
and live to serve your will in all I do.

Copyright © 2015 by Andrew King