Author Archive: jatwohey

Plastic Flowers

I loved you, at your darkest.” Romans 5:8

My Coffin Confessional

what boxed secrets 
lay hidden
buried deep
within the grave 

I pause, reflecting
on my own heart's coffin 
buried deep 
above the grave

The breath of Zephyr exhales
His words echo through the tombs 
"nothing is covered that won't be revealed
or hidden that will not be made known..."  
 
convicted, I genuflect in the dirt 
with empty, open hands
I lay down my offering
of plastic flowers

at the weathered cross
a cracked marker for a broken life
Zephyr whispers his word 
that rips the veiled box in two 

kneeling at the foot 
of the memorial stone
I whisper my coffin confessional
tears wash the stone's plastic flowers 

communion breaks
consecrating 
my coffin confessional 
and heals the crack
His Mercy speaks: "Forgiven, now go in Peace."   

Whoever conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.Proverbs 28:13

“Forgiven, now go in peace.” Luke 7:48-50

Home

“And looking up to heaven, he sighed deeply and said, “Ephphatha, which means be opened.”” Mark 7:34

In the night hush, zephyr lingers
caressing the boy awake
sleepily, he peers through the invisible stained glass
longing to hear the hymn of the sea 
that echoes amidst the tree's canopy 

The tree aches to give what the boy must choose
wooden limbs cocoon the seed for the-one-not-yet-of-age
quietly, waiting in anticipation
for the boy's conception of painted hands
that reflect the hands that formed them

Seeds planted long ago with dirt fingernails
the gardener's hands fashioned the boy and wood 
from dust and dirt
the soul and earth's womb tenderly tilled in anticipation 
for the boy and tree's inception of his fruit

The weathered hands gently cup the two seeds
the-artist-of-every-creature softly breathes on them
sealing his longing with a signet kiss
the mist germinates the seeds, giving life to the boy and the tree
and the dew of ephphatha imprints home

The tree knows, he carries the weight 
of the-artist-who-formed-him from dirt
the roots ache with the knowledge
his limbs will be dragged to Golgotha
to bear the nails of the bloodied hands that gave him life

But the twofold promise of the tree also shadows the seed
of the boy's longing for the-one-he-longs-for
the father's exhaled promise for the boy
shelters in the tree
cradling the inhaled revelation of the artist's hands

Ring upon ring, the tree strengthens
fired sap coursing through its veins
giving sweet delight to those who remain still 
to hear the sound of the honey
and taste the tree's manna

Season after season, the tree inches to heaven
waiting for the-boy-who-longs-to-paint 
to see the tree carved by the carpenter with enough wood 
to carry both the father and the son, home

Zephyr curls off the water, 
collecting the boy's salted tears discarded along the shore
each sorrow gently placed in his sacred bottle
the tears mix with the son's fired blood
a holy water baptism compressed in each drop
of the father's mercy too deep to know

The tree stands sentinel, the appointed time has come
his limbs gently lift the boy, holding him near, to hear
heaven's roar of the sea
zephyr opens the ear to hear the painted-spit whisper: 
ephphatha

The son opens his hands
to receive the father's brush
who painted him with the same stick
that stirs the paint within him
the veiled canvas gently reveals vision, to see the three

The artist spills his painted blood
colour streams into the boy who receives
the very paint that turns the season of the tree into kairos
with a deep sigh, the boy inhales the artist's exhaled ephphatha
zephyr opens the boy's longing to paint home

With the imprint of his father's hands
line upon line he pours out the paint
the reservoir of colour overflows from deep within
with the father's stick, he paints each line
wooing him to the space, he stills

Borderland, the space between 
where longings meet
the father's waiting room 
where he quietly lingers 
with arms open

The sabbath space
the gift of borderland
where in communion with the son,  zephyr rests
as the father longingly waits for his son 
to paint his way home

While the son was a long way off, the father ran to his son, and threw his arms around him and kissed him.” Luke 15:20

“You keep track of all my sorrows. You have collected all my tears in your bottle. You have recorded each one in your book.” Psalm 56:8

The Middle Space of Time

trumpeter

And he will send his angels with a loud trumpet call, and they will gather his elect from the four winds, from one end of the heavens to the other.  – Matthew 24:31.

The trumpeters stand poised, on the edge of the field, waiting for his commissioning. The birthed few linger in anticipation for the Holy One’s nod to release the sound.

“Who are they?” I inquire.

Gabriel whispers, “They are the messengers.”

The sent ones wait patiently for the Ephphatha dew that opens the ones to behold. The restrained alarm waits for the few who ready for what is to become. The middle space of temporal time transitions into the fullness of unity and the tick-tock of waiting from one to the other prepares the ear to hear the new sound.

Those who contend in the waiting of time are those prepared to stay awake on His battlefield.

The wind hovers waiting to seize and carry the messages of the trumpeters to those, who in the waiting, have trained their ear for war. The trumpeters stand ready, to tap out Heaven’s Morse code to the earth’s few who hear the wind’s whispered call of Ephphatha.

The enemy takes aim at the trumpeters, hoping to silence the signallers on the edge of the battlefield. He quietly waits to intercept and deflect the new sound so that those who slumber miss the trumpeter’s plea.

For without the trumpeters who will hear Heaven’s battle cry for war?

trumpeterswans3

The Christmas Truce, 1914

christmas in the trenches gift card

“All the lands are at rest and at peace, they break into singing. Isaiah 14:7”

The Christmas Truce of 1914 during the First World War is a profound legacy of Peace, as foe greeted friend with hymns of Silent Night, Holy Night.

Hosanna rang out from the sacred trumpet as the Star of Bethlehem hovered over no-man’s land beckoning comrades to follow it. Laying down their weapons, they arose from the trenches bearing gifts of food, trench art, and smokes. In holy silence, brothers marched towards the space that once divided them.

“Peace, be with you!”  “And also with you!”

Halleluiah! Halleluiah! A hallowed night indeed as good will toward men echoed in the trenches. The Christmas Truce of 1914; a holy reminder of our Canadian Forces as we pray, “Thank you for our nations Peace.” Halleluiah!

Peace my friends, Merry Christmas! Jane.

Christmas_Truce_19142-277x300

Called to stand with those who serve.

Sanctum Sanctorum

twins

The sack-clothed glory readies in the womb as wailing women give voice to its imminent arrival.

“EX INTIMIS VISCERIBUS MISERICORDIA COMMOVEOR!”

His womb aches for a resting place but there is no room in the sanctuary. The marketplace hustles and bustles in anticipation of the Harvest Census but buyers and sellers dismiss the value of the fertilized seed. The merchants know there is no margin in a fruit freely given.

There is movement in the womb. The fruit is ripe, saturated for birth, and the midwifery stones wail in anticipation. His eyes dart to and fro longing for labourers empty enough to bear the olive-pressed fruit.

It is the ninth hour.

Splagchnon makes room for the ache of His womb. The cry of Nineveh transitions through the blue penciled line between the seen and the unseen. The membrane of silence shatters with the final push:

“LAMA SABACHTHANI?”

The divine dew pink with the blood spews forth. A longing so deep, it overflows from the heart of Him into the humble who long to give. The ring of fire sears those who bear the Gethsemane twinned fruit. Compassion and mercy are named. The swaddled fruit whimper, still tender from the birth. Incubated in the shadow, they wait for the Father to make room. The Lord of Hosts raises his sword and cries out:

“SANCTUM SANCTORUM!”

The yielded sword, sever unholy alliances that stop the flow. The beloved is pruned and those who do not succumb to the sword are driven from the sanctuary. The Father of Mercy reclaims His key and unlocks Sanctum Sanctorum; its counterfeit is hurled into the fire. A tear trickles down his cheek as He surveys the lost multitude huddled in the secret place. Moved with compassion, He raises his sickle and whispers:

“I will have mercy on whom I will have mercy,
I will have compassion on whom I will have compassion.”

The eyes of the heart reveal the wisdom of His fruit. Travailing at Gethsemane precedes the entrusting of the precious multitude. Ichabod remains constipated but humility opens loins that long to be moved. Compassion pushes out judgement and mercy boomerangs back blessing those who bless. The twinned fruit bear more fruit. Preaching, teaching and healing become the heirs of compassion; kindness and forgiveness are begotten of mercy.

Compassion and mercy restore the breach that wall the cubed ember. The repaired rampart protects the flame and the newly polished pearl illuminates the way. Hand in hand, nations return to the square drawn by the brilliance of the Lamb. On bended knee, they drink from the chalice of the river that roars from the fire. Ha’etz is shared and in communion, they eat the fullness of the fruit tree. The agony of the garden that birthed the fruit, blossoms into leaves that heal Gethsemane. Glory and honour take their place; the rear guard fruits of compassion and mercy.

The root rises to kiss the star as the twelve watchmen position at the gates. At the sound of the trumpet, in unity the Sentinel Host cries out for Nineveh:

Holy, Holy, Holy,
 Sanctum Sanctorum.
Blessed is the fruit of thy womb, Jesus.
 Kyrie eleison,
 Christe eleison,
 Kyrie eleison.
 -Amen-

movedwithcompassion

“But when he saw the multitudes, He was moved with compassion for them…”   Matthew 9:36

The Feast

The feast of the seagulls hovers over no-man’s land waiting for the unprepared to strike the first blow.

Foolish men of war help themselves to heavens armoury and with unknown arrogance they assume the knowledge of instruction on how to wield them. They sharpen tools for the vintage wrath of the King while the humble quietly empty their hands.

The meek know the power of the sword and who bears the weight of it.

The visible bride veils the true bride as she readies in the sanctuary. A purity set apart prepares her while the foolish flaunt the tools of their destruction.

In peace, the humble shall inherit borderland because they go forth not. They wait in the shadow of the King as heaven releases the almighty host for war.

At the sound of the trumpet, God’s army thunders across borderland while men of war charge into the enemy’s ambush. The angelic host cries out:

Sanctus, sanctus, sanctus Dominus Deus sabbaoth.
Pleni sunt caeli et terra gloria tua.
Hosanna in Excelsis.
Benedictus qui venit in nomine domini.
Hosanna in Excelsis.

With shield and sickle, the harvest begins; and in peace, the meek inherit borderland.

 …the birds will feed on those who die in the country. 1 Kings 21:24

Between us

There is a line in the sand beyond which I proceed no further.

Where grace meets dismissal,

I hide from the line of the stick I carry.

I see borderland but not the one of my making.

I cry out for mercy for the line I now see

between us.

Borderland

“He marks out the horizon on the face of the waters for a boundary between light and darkness.” Job 26:10

The middle space of war narrows to a hairline fracture as kingdoms prepare for war.  The borderland kingdom of God is here. We camp on the edge of war, and in borderland discernment speaks.

Glory readies to shatter earth’s glass ceiling, slicing the veiled invisible. Holy smoke trickles up through the cracked glass beckoning thy kingdom down. Bleeding hands stretch up through the cracks in want of the shield and the white stones of peace.

The dim glass clouds the seer as he struggles to discern what his heart sees. Invisible leaks light to visible as the convergence of kingdoms bleed out the line that marks borderland.

In communion of shields we ready for war and with faith cupped hands we release the white pebbles of peace at borderland.

“He grants peace to your borders and satisfies you with the finest of wheat.” Psalm 47:14

Borderland – land located on or near a frontier or boundary, an indeterminate region
Kingdom Borderland – the spiritual frontier located between the visible and the invisible

The Song of Deborah

When leaders lead in Israel,
When the people willingly offer themselves,
Bless the Lord!
deborah
Hear O kings. Give ear, O princes.
I, even I, will sing to the LORD; I will sing praise to the Lord God of Israel.
For 1 Chronicles 12:32 says,
“And of the sons of Issachar, were men who had understanding of the times.
And the princes of Issachar were with Deborah”
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