Monday, November 10, 2014

The strength of God shows through your presence.
Broken one, heal me.

The strength of Faith show through your words.
Dying one, speak to me.

The strength of the Word has made you Golden,
His wisdom glows through you now,
I write with words, and your peace, unspoken
gives me all--His strength, and yours.
Open me
like silence waiting
Open me
like rings upon rings
like a trapt door
like a bad lock
like something well hidden, leaving dirt under your nails
long forgotten, yet undiscovered
like a closed book
like a sealed letter
like a strange, unlabeled box
in a bottom drawer
I have never been open
and I want to know who she is.


Ice folds and I am found in winter.
Winter has grown to Spring.
Spring ended in fire.
Summer spent with little water
and now, exposed to
falling leaves, the Autumn season
becomes me, earth tones, golden weather,
time is slowing
and I want to know
what i have missed
what could have been
what might still be.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014


The house sounds good.
It moans with the tide of the wind,
not a hushing sound, not soothing, more
of a rush, a remembrance.

Lying beneath the metal roof of the back room, I listen to tilting timbers,
the old croaks of days long past, of weather and wear,
and the walls whisper--remember too much,
and you'll become lost in this place.
No gust of wind is the same--
make the voices new--
make the meaning new.

Your thoughts are weighed by sadness and mist; a damp fog surrounds your forehead.

You are in it, but don't know it yet.

Standing in the fog, waiting for a light to pop and save you.

You're in it now--and the fog is in you,
slowing thoughts, feeding fear, numbing senses.

Don't try to react,
you can't wade through it;
just wait.

Friday, September 5, 2014

The Basin

To live always between two places,
pulled, moving back and forth
in our minds--the old place, the place of rain
falling down upon us, where memories swell,

and that new place, where sunlight burns
the skin 'til we blister
and our eyes are dazzled by
looking forward to all matter of possibilities.

To live within that in-between, like a trench between mountain and field,
seeking left and right in the gray skies
then standing still to breathe. Listening--
for what? The wind?
This lonely basin, this never-place, this now
looking back at rain, looking forward at sun
and feeling silence simmer on our searching brow.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

And the honest truth is they let us down, not always gently--plop us on the floor after a sudden word and leave you there. People. They come and go. And you fill them up like houses, moving furniture around, helping sort things out. You try to offer - maybe too much - gifts and spare things like apples from the grocery store; you pick out shirts that would fit, the perfect place to put a lamp. Then you expect too much, a book returned, or a nice view out a window, a pretty corner in an open room where you can sit together. People. You let them in through the front door like honored guests and they leave through the back, seeing all their faults in you. We show them out, then take them in again, because they knock and the door swings open and shut.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

I am tired of sitting quietly under the tree, watching
wind on the grass.

I am tired of passively folding before grief, biting down
on leather straps. I yearn for winter, and then grow tired
of the cold. Spring seems like a new garden, frighteningly green,
and I am reluctant to leave the snow.
i want to be in that little boat, on that lake
somewhere in the wood, on a warm afternoon,

where reeds push up against the side
of the water, vibrant miles

and i can see shoreline, like the breath of me
aligned with you, because we came here together

as old friends sinking lures
on the lake, casting lines in the blue.

The Season

December 23rd, 2013

I am in that place again, melting, reforming,
my thoughts getting sloppy, spilling out
over the sheets as I lie awake at night, heavy,
unable to sleep.

Weight, like an iron ton
compresses my chest. 'Tis the season of wrapping gifts in regrets
and eating minced meats, sugary sweets, so sweet
they make my teeth ache.

And outside, I see pretty lights gleam
from the gutters of my neighbor's house. I lie awake
with flurrying thoughts, snow drifting down, melting on pavement
and freezing in doubt.

I can't make peace with you in the silent night.
I bow my head to the pillow, praising
those red and green lights, the wreath on the door and heart bound tight
under the tree, where the presents lie waiting.


Love is our last gasp
before silence falls; a desperate grasp
for meaning.

Imperfect weather, I breathe out
a final release: I am letting go of lightning.

Small cracks align the heart,
denoting one region from another.
After the rain, thunder rolls through us.
Muscles stutter against
broken plans, abandoned meanings,
collapsing bridges and sudden endings.

the sky encased by dampened clouds, here is the heart
torn asunder. We can run for shelter,
but the storm rages on within and the wind
breathes out, the rain swells--
a gasp, release, and thunder.

~T. L. Shreffler