Friday, July 29, 2016

Donald and Vladimir

by Jim Rapp

Today Donald Trump is being initiated.
As nominee he gets his first security briefing.
Let’s hope The Donald hasn’t negotiated
a deal allowing Vladimir Putin to be swapping
DNC emails his buddy Assange appropriated
for our deepest secrets; our nuclear encoding.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

Waiting for the RLS to Cease

by Jim Rapp

I’m ready to get to sleep
But first I have to convince
These legs that writhe and leap
To calm themselves; evince

Some evidence that the pills
Prescribed to calm synapses
Will un-will the thousand wills
That spoil my precious napses

Thursday, July 21, 2016

Truth Playing Second Fiddle

By Jim Rapp

What makes a normally honest man,
a faith professing, Christ professing, truth defender,
bear false witness, knowing his words can
serve one purpose only, to wound his foe by slander?

It is, without a doubt the spirit of Anti-Christ,
that sets the Truth aside for momentary advantage
or cloaks behaviors dishonoring Jesus Christ
in pious, but self-serving, “Christian” language.

"Whoever is not with me is against me,
and whoever does not gather with me scatters.”
The spirit of anti-Christ is what we see
when fidelity to Truth yields to other matters.

Anti-Christ is not some beast rising from the sea,
but rather a rebellion in the human breast
that chooses the Lie, the gauzy Lie, hard to see,
to demean another and lay their cause to rest.

Monday, July 18, 2016

Cain and Abel

by Jim Rapp

blue clad men dispatched
black skinned man dispatched
black skinned men dispatched
blue clad men dispatched
we used to say they bleed the same
now we know blood bears their name
their signature, their birthright’s claim
its Cain and Abel at it once again

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Nice, France

by Jim Rapp

Forty, fifty, sixty, seventy, eighty
And the toll may well go higher.
Nice becomes the most recent absurdity;
Her dead piled high on freedom’s pyre.

Monday, July 11, 2016

Simple Beauties for Trying Days

by Jim Rapp

It must have been for days like these
            that God made:

            blue, cloud-filled skies,
            fields of goldenrod
            song birds
            newborn babies
            innocent children
            gatherings of friends
            plates laden with food
            lighthearted laughter
            the security of home
            the loyalty of family

It must have been for days like these

            when the spirit of anti-Christ
            is abroad in the land,
            evident even in the
            Body of Christ,
            that He reveals Himself
            in the innocent beauties
            that surround us,
            giving us hope.

America is Reaping the Wirlwind

As many as twenty assault rifle bearing “patriots” marched in the Black Lives Matter parade in Dallas, TX last week, their guns slung over their shoulder or across their back, exercising their Texas right to openly bear any gun they wish. When the shooting broke out, eventually felling twelve Dallas police officers, killing five of them, the police initially confused these “good guys, exercising their 2nd Amendment rights, for the attackers, even arresting two of them (one carrying without a permit, earning himself a misdemeanor). They were, after-all wearing gas masks, camouflage gear, and bullet-proof vests. Why wouldn’t they be suspect in a charged environment like that? It is a tribute to the training of the Dallas police that none of them were shot in the confusion.

And of course all the gun carrying patriots rushed to the aid of the police and helped run down, and gun down, the shooter. Of course they did. That is the theory behind allowing every testosterone-energized male to have a gun in public; so they can take out the shooters. Didn't Donald Trump say that if there had been more gun-totting patrons at the darkened concert theater in Paris the gunmen would have been shot forthwith?

Of course the Dallas’ pseudo-patriots did not run to the aid of the police or other citizens. Of course their "massive show of force" did not stop the carnage. Of course they did not turn their endless firepower on the active shooter. There is no evidence that any of them fired a shot. Why? Because carrying assault weapons and displaying them has nothing to do with the maintenance of a well-ordered militia; nothing to do with maintaining order of any kind. It has nothing to do with the Second Amendment. It is a macho thing; an excuse for boys who grew up watching too much of Rambo, or spent their youth playing fantasy games on Xbox, or listened to too many macho country western songs to convince themselves that they would lay down their lives for freedom. Well, they had their chance – these men who sit on the back of their shiny pickup trucks, under a provocative banner challenging the government (I presume) to come and take their guns from them – and they ran away as quickly as those who had no weapons.

We are hell-bent on self-destruction in this land, not just those who are weekly blowing holes in shooting ranges, but every citizen who enables them by electing gutless officials who are afraid to stand up to the NRA; by glorifying violence in our media, our sports, our movies, our literature.

Since 1776 the U.S. have been involved in at least 104 deadly conflicts, according to a list in Wikipedia, a great many of them on our own soil, against those who originally had possession of the land we now call our own. Over the 240 years of our existence a deadly conflict has been begun every 2.3 years. And we call ourselves a “peace-loving” nation? But the loss of life through those conflicts, great and tragic as it is, pales beside the gruesome history of murderous conflict of citizen against citizen. Increasing from a trickle at the nation’s outset, personal violence has now become the norm in many of our urban centers. And the weapon of choice has long been the legally (or illegally) possessed fire arm.

We cannot hide our heads in the sand any longer. We cannot deny the truth about ourselves. We are a violent people and we are reaping the whirlwind.

Saturday, July 9, 2016

Grieving with Falcon Heights, Baton Rouge & Dallas

by Jim Rapp

Artists, paint today,
Paint in red, paint in blood red.
Black and White blood calls

For bold souls to say,
All lives count; any one dead
Diminishes all.

Monday, July 4, 2016

Thank God

by Jim Rapp

Jesus’ visit to earth changed little
(but for some it changed everything);
there are still “wars and rumors of war”,
there is still hatred, brutality, violence,
there is still corruption and selfishness,
there is still no “peace on earth”.

But for some it changed everything:
there are those who work to be peacemakers,
there are those who are kind, gentle, and meek,
there are those who are honest and other-focused,
there are those whose peace passes understanding.
If you meet one of these, thank God.