Thursday, November 27, 2008


when we see you
not only in the twinkle
of a woman's eye
as she lets her grandchildren
lick the icing bowl,
but especially in
a homeless mother
looking at hope's
empty shelves;

when we hear you
not only in the carols
of the children
at evensong,
but especially
in the silent sobs
of the father who
has lost his job;

when we feel you
not just in the embrace
of loved ones
at the airport,
but especially
in the palsied,
paper-thin-skinned hands
of the lonely widow;

when we know you
not just in the assertive platitudes
of those who have never held a doubt,
but especially
in the shattered heart
of the teenager
whose faith has slipped
through her fingers:

we will know
you have come

just as you

(c) 2008 Thom M. Shuman

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

as for me . . . (joshua 24)

it was not
so long ago
i served other gods:
years ago, it was named 'fear';
last month, i kneeled at greed's altar;
this past week, pride seduced me;
yester (& almost every) day
i followed anger down
that potholed road.

even when
i put them away
in a box marked
'former life,'
they try to
slip their fingers
under the edges
to push the lid off -
or swaddle themselves
in red and green ribbon,
so i will find them
under the tree;

for this day and
(please, Lord!)
all the days to follow,
i will choose
to cross faith's River,
leaving them
on the shoreline
behind me.
(c) 2008 Thom M. Shuman