I am so happy that this haiku was included in Things with Wings & other poems, edited by Aubrie Cox. She is offering this lovely poetry collection as a free download from her blog. It includes many fine poets and Aubrie’s wonderful illustrations. For more information, please see her Projects page and/or her June 25, 2012 Post. http://yaywords.wordpress.com. Thank you, Aubrie.
pages falling out
held in place by tape
. . . the Psalms
I have this Bible by my side as I write this post. This is The Promise in the Contemporary English Version. Copyright 1995, Thomas Nelson, Inc. I see in my Bible that I began reading this version in 1996.
Reading the Psalms aloud in different English translations became my spiritual practice all these years ago. In 1993, I had the shock of major surgery, after earning tenure at a university in Chicago earlier that year. I was 39 years old then. It took 20 years to reach that achievement in my field of special education. But life changes, and it was an early morning to late night work schedule. I also taught Sunday School year-round for 12 of those years. Although I could no longer sustain this kind of life, in terms of my physical strength, I am truly grateful for those two decades.
We don’t really know how long we have to make a contribution somewhere.
It took me years to understand that a chronic illness had everything to do with my return to Wisconsin and the privilege of helping with my mother’s care for years. My energy level was gradually changing and this forced stark choices. But I taught courses in collaboration and I knew how to help put together the best team for Mom. She would say, “You are so kind,” and towards the end of her life, “You’ve been so loyal.” If so, I credit illness and Grace. And reading the Psalms. I also found haiku, and then in 2009, began blogging–and so all of you.
I can’t possibly understand, but I believe in God’s providence. As my dad said, “Everything will be OK in the end.” I am simply grateful and blessed every single day. The mystery is that illness was my best teacher. And it brought me to this quiet life that is what keeps me well. God’s grace all these years, and my place to trust Him.
I keep adding more tape to this Bible, and simply seeing it on my shelf gives me new faith. This Bible was also with me in the hospital and nursing home during my mother’s last illness. I read aloud from it to Mom, along with her favorite poets. When I could no longer hold her hand “in person,” I held this Bible.
So much of my own history is now in the Psalms. God will continue to be faithful to us, comfort us, because that is who He is.
This is the story and reason for a blog called “Poems From Psalms and Nature.” For some of you this is new information, and for others, old. Thank you for reading as always. How I value our community of kindness and friendship!
Grateful every day,
Daisies images courtesy of Karen’s Whimsy.