Sunday, February 18, 2018

Suffer the Children to Come Unto Me

(Haiku Form)

But Jesus said, Suffer little children,
and forbid them not, to come unto me:
for of such is the kingdom of heaven.
(Matt 19:14 King James Version)

Since "King James days" we've
changed the meaning of "suffer";
it once meant "allow".

We've changed the meaning
of "children" too; innocents
are no longer so.

Children now suffer
wounds that once were reserved for
mature hearts and minds.

But nonetheless we
still convey our children to
Jesus, and still, of

such His Kingdom is
filled children from every race,
from every nation;

innocents, plucked from
mother-arms are conveyed to
Jesus' waiting throne.

It is grace that stands
to welcome them, grace that grieves
the empty mother-arms.

They came to their own,
and their own revered them not;
sounds familiar, no?

It is a sin they
were not protected in this
mad Kingdom of Man.

Saturday, February 17, 2018

Who Will Cast A Vote For Plowshares?

Sitting in my safe abode I juxtapose the falling morning
snow against the fallen students' families' mourning.

I asked the question that most thinking people ask:
Can You, God, not end this carnage at long last?

I hear the politicians speak – the servants of the NRA –
"There will be time for talk of solutions; but not today."

"Today we must unite in love and thoughts and prayers,"
a wink, and hands extended toward the NRA's payers.

Isaiah spoke of a time of swords becoming plowshares.
That must be the time these winking pols are waiting for.

They're waiting for You to confiscate our deadly weapons,
and melt them into Farmalls, John Deeres and DaeDongs.

But I am reminded, now, that You instituted governments to
do the very things our waffling politicians refuse to do.

You put in man's hands, power to establish peace, but where
can I find a Republican, willing to cast a vote for plowshares?
The authorities that exist have been established by God . . .
They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment
on the wrongdoer. (Rom 13: 1, 4 NIV)

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

There Will Be A Time To Have That Discussion

by Jim Rapp

The good Governor Scott of Florida addressed the press
today, regarding a shooting at a Florida High School in which
Seventeen souls were summarily executed within less
than half an hour by a demented young man with an itch
to settle scores long brewing in his head and breast.

A nineteen-year-old with an AR-15 and multiple clips
fulfills his social media dream of "watching the sheep fall"
before his onslaught, then calmly blending his steps
with those of frantic fleeing students, leaving halls
he'd stained with blood; halls where dying children wept.

When Governor Scott of Florida was asked if it was time
to consider laws to limit access to such lethal weapons,
he grabbed the NRA Play Book, spouting – yet another time –
the tired, senseless, heartless Talking Points of Republicans;
"There will be a time to have that discussion" – some time.

Tuesday, February 13, 2018

An Old Man's Breakfast

by Jim Rapp

The best part of his breakfast
isn't the aroma of coffee brewing,
or even bacon spitting on the griddle;

It is the time when, at last,
all the morning pills are stewing
in his gut, freeing him to eat real vittles,

A slice or two of buttered toast,
a cup of coffee, black and steaming;
pills, and morning aches, banished for a little.

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

The President's Parade*

by Jim Rapp

The President, visiting the homeland of Napoleon,
was very taken by the Bastille Day parade and,
coming home, told his Generals, "I want one –,
an even bigger one – with rockets and a military band."

Some Americans clearly recall the days when
such parades were staged at the whim of despotic men
like Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, and Ho Chi Minh.
Or current demagogues like, Putin and Kim Jong Un.

No matter that such military braggadocio is not
in America's tradition; that we are loathe to flaunt what
we've got of guns, missiles and tanks – of men that
goosestep for the glory of their Fuehrer's lot.

It suits America more that, once a year, we proudly affirm
our founding with picnics, athletic events, fireworks,
and yes, marching bands – and in doing so we disaffirm
any bluster, intended to bolster the ego of the Chief Jerk.
* President Trump is pushing for the establishment of an
annual military Parade that would move down Pennsylvania
Avenue, past the White House, and would be larger and
grander that the Bastille Day Parade he viewed on his 2017
visit to France.

Sunday, February 4, 2018

Child Abuse: A Hard "Pill" to Swallow

by Jim Rapp

Our Mother called us "pills" –
she call us other names –
forbidden names today – but still
her kids were passing sane.

Such words we took without offense,
though they were bitter pills to swallow,
and no social worker came to our defense;
we shifted for ourselves and made a go.

Alas, not one of us has spent a day
incarcerated,  robbed a bank,
or stole a worker's pay,
or from our duty shrank.

I guess we understood that we
were "pills" indeed, and therefore
well deserving; could sometimes be
what Mom decreed, and sometimes more.

And one thing still I need to say;
Mom salted all her scolds with grace,
dispensed a thousand times a day,
forgiving, loving, serving our unruly race.

Saturday, February 3, 2018

Hapless February

by Jim Rapp

February, often misspelled,
more often mispronounced;
and when it comes to days, who knows
how many one should count?

We've sprinkled it with holidays,
but only one that stops the mail;
it sprinkles us with snow flakes,
light and white, frothy and frail.

Hapless February even messes with
the birthdays of those unfortunates,
fated to have come on leap year's
extra day – of injuries, the ultimate.

If we only knew who manufactured it,
we'd pack it up and send it back to be
retooled, given a decent name and sufficient
days to let it stand with January equally.