In October, I was making my way through Kings and Chronicles, which for the first time I really experienced as truly gripping reads. And this brought me once again to Jeroboam and his lingering legacy of wicked idolatry. I wrote this poem while frustrated with Sin and wilful sins. Determination, intention, and dusting off must yet find us at the feet of Christ, needing real grace and forgiveness.
By the image and afterimage of all my chosen griefs I,
eager for money, mad for Martha’s woe
in the seat lazy to the point
of hating one and also the other,
do now stand up and walk.
And I walk in the ways
in the ways in the
ways of the
as ever and ever they did.
In the counsel of the wicked
and their own hearts’ guiding
man walked and stood and sat.
O light in darkness
counsel of good, move my feet
To keep in step.
Swiftly bring savour, heart’s desire
Favour, conscience, to whet my eyes
To wonderful way
O Jilted Jesus!
This is a bit over-the-top. But for the sake of getting back into writing, I think a bit of exaggeration is alright. The Red-throated Wryneck is a stunning little bird, shy and rarely seen.
Inbetween its visits, we do have plenty of others to watch for. The Paradise Fly Catchers may return soon, I think. And we’ve actually been wonderfully treated with the return of the remarkable African Green Pigeons this week, gorging themselves heavy on the ripe orange berries next door.
A year I’ve awaited your return
O russet love, how shall I lure
– a wonder, every heart beat yearns –
you back? Come south, I can’t endure!
Twice my eyes your life have seen.
Twice your auburn breast admired,
loved your specks with stripe between,
your dancing, wherever you desired.
Verdant verdure, you marked the scene
burnt in my heart. I adjure,
come back and strike once more this green
with dark demure rustling pure.
Bring your drab and secret gown
of leaves’ investiture, your crown.
Image credit: Thomas Varto Nielsen https://www.africanbirdclub.org/afbid/search/birddetails/species/1056/20887