Bless his heart! Does he really know what’s what?
He tries, yes, but he’s in over his head.
Trying too hard for too long, has he not?
We gave him a chance, but that chance is dead.
We had high hopes, but the job isn’t done.
Isn’t it time to let someone else try?
I know we were hoping he was the one,
But that didn’t work; time to say good-bye.
Times are a changing, but he stayed the same,
He just doesn’t have the drive anymore.
I don’t think he’s trying; his words are so lame,
And they sound like something he said before.
Blood in the narthex leads to the culprit.
Time for fresh blood to lead from the pulpit.
I am not in the mood to make words rhyme
Or to count syllables to fit each line.
I am just not inspired to ring that chime.
And seek though I may, I can’t find a sign
To show that this is the time for writing
That forty-fourth sonnet in this series.
Maybe I’ll skip it instead of fighting
This drunken muse. But, sadly, I fear he’s
Just passing through, so I am inclined to
Take what he offers no matter how lame.
I may be wrong, but I am not blind to
How dull the wild word once overly tame.
Whatever. ‘Tis writ. It won’t be erased.
Worthy? Who cares? No accounting for taste.
Was it sand in your eye that made things look
So desperate? Maybe premature weaning
That made you suspect that blade sings took
No vespers hate. Say he flees the cure, meaning
Nothing is wrong but thinking makes it so.
You’ve got a feeling just because you’ve got
A feeling something isn’t right, yet no
Problem lies without. The problem is not
Out there somewhere. It doesn’t match your fears.
Out where some care. It doesn’t fit your thought.
So isn’t it clear? There between your ears,
Is where the problem lies – and lies – and ought
To give you disassurance that you know
Anything of anything. No down low.
I was made for chewing fat, shooting bull
And shooing cat. I was made for killing
Time, and dropping dime in a glass half full.
I was made for weaving yarn and thrilling
Barn owls in broad daylight. I was made to
Go through phases of clichés and I will
Do these things and I will wing it. Stayed true
To that old school form of toadstool by still
Spending hours bending humor into
Cream-style corn, blow my own horn and waking
Sleeping dogs while sawing logs or tend to.
Spit against the wind or pit friend taking
Time with those who lack repose while sitting
By themselves on lonesome shelves just knitting.
No, I don’t know engines, but I know how
Twisting this chokes it off, but helps it start.
Internal combustion helps us go now
But I don’t understand it at its heart.
More gas! More air! It roars and pops and then
It leaps into a loud and choppy purr.
Dying, quick! More gas! More air! Giggle when
That rattle and pop settles down to stir
The whole machine to productive action
Of turning the wheels and spinning the blade
A surge and a chug. With a little traction
We rip through the weeds and we’ve got it made.
The rusty lawn tractor rattles to life
It rolls like a tank and cuts like a knife.
Cat Lady Ziggy feeding feral strays,
Guess we never knew what she was up to.
Tabby, black, calico, white, spotted, gray,
Cats and kittens, Ziggy serving sup to.
Cat Lady Ziggy thinks she’s doing good,
Herding cats into this great location.
Rat-free and squirrel-free, no birds in the wood.
Colony of carnivores at station.
Cat Lady Ziggy, must be all alone,
Could be feeding birds in her own back yard.
Feeding feral cats in the Twilight Zone,
Roaming vandals, corpses their calling card.
Ziggy, let them scatter. Just leave them be.
Spay them, fillet them, if it’s up to me.
It’s a day without a sonnet, and that
Will be true till this diddy deed is done.
Still a day without a sonnet, hands at
The task of counting syllables for fun.
This day without a sonnet stands alone
Among those seventeen days that contain
Each at least one sonnet that was unknown.
For now quatrain and couplet still remain
To be composed and forced to match the rest.
Like making bricks to match the blueprint hole
That should match bricks but failed the ruler test,
It’s architect unsuited to the role.
We wipe our brow. The task is near complete.
Another sonnet day is on the street!
Here at one year past my ordination,
Seventeen years, five months past my calling,
Twelve years into full-time obligation,
Celebrating fourty-four years’ stalling,
On my second church and my fifth career,
Sixth hometown, the plot begins to thicken.
It’s not that I jobhop or fail to steer;
I’m not adventuresome, just no spring chicken.
Some seventy-six sermon videos,
Going on six-thousand I’ve delivered.
Riding high in my second rodeo,
Trying hard to keep my arrows quivered.
Though too much to learn and nothing to teach,
God help, says Paul, I can’t choose not to preach!
Some say nothing ever happens by chance.
They say God knew all before all ever was.
They think it’s all ordained, a song and dance,
But I believe the Bible, just because.
Some say God won’t repent or change God’s mind.
They say God has no reason for regrets.
They say God orchestrates all but I find
Rejoicing in those things that God forgets.
So God can be let down by God’s anointed.
The Bible says the future isn’t stiff.
It says God was surprised and disappointed.
The biggest word in scripture, that is “if”.
I say these things even though I’m liable
To be called “heretic”. Read the Bible!
Ah, Sunday morning! An obligation
To enter the House of God’s dominion.
Is there conviction or confirmation?
The Great Physician’s second opinion.
Ah, Sunday morning! The benches are hard!
The air feels heavy within sacred bricks.
God’s Word is sharp like a pottery shard,
For those who are kicking against the pricks.
Ah, Sunday morning! Comfort and care,
Sisters and brothers all in the same boat.
The preacher rows, but the Helmsman is there
To chop the waters yet keep us afloat.
Ah, Sunday morning! It’s all in your head
If you stop the alarm and stay in bed.