Playdates with God: Suddenly, a Single Star

Morning comes too early and I pack the lunches and ready breakfast and then I slip out back with my coffee while forks clatter on plates to start the slow waking. It’s fifty-six degrees outside and fall hangs heavy from the trees, pressing down from above. I stand under a lidded sky when suddenly a single star. My head is full of a cold and of music from last night and I am thinking about friends who drink too much and the way my boy looked marching out on the football field with that snare hanging down in front of him.

And what do you do when someone who used to love you—whose children you’ve loved and held and prayed for—deliberately keeps a secret just to hurt you?

The beauty of the meadow dawns with all her yellow and purple ironweed and a flock of birds inks out the emerging light above.

Sometimes the season changes before I’m ready—the slow-turning earth won’t wait for me to catch up. And why am I so slow, anyway? Always holding on to the way things used to be.
I gather up a song in my head…try to cover it all with love—with grace. The cloak doesn’t fit so well this morning and I think of a poem—my migration poem and I wonder what it must feel like to shift with the seasons this way. And I wonder why I can’t write poetry anymore.
I close my eyes and I can soar—catch an updraft and shed the weight of the dew. Why not let a poem remind me that I can fly? There is beauty in the hard wrestle—the twisty, turny knots of life.
I may limp for the rest of my days but I’m holding on for the blessing.

and have you seen
them move as one
across this brumal
frame—inking out
the sun with their
gusty arc?
hearts pulled by 
some invisible string—
moving southward,
joining this great
dance that spins 

this world.

oh! seasons,
how mysterious
your lure. do not
spare my wandering
heart your beauty.
listen to it:

**The winner of Elaine Olsen’s book, Beyond Cancer’s Scars, is Genevieve Thul! You can read about her journey with cancer here. Congratulations, Genevieve, I know you will be blessed by Elaine’s words.  I’ll be in touch. 

How do you embrace the God-joy? Every Monday I’ll be sharing one of my Playdates with God. I would love to hear about yours. It can be anything: outside, quiet time. Maybe it’s solitary. Maybe it’s loud and crowded. Just find Him. Be with Him. Grab my button at the bottom of the page and join us: 

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  1. says

    Oh, I know that feeling of the world galloping ahead of me and I just need to let it go and continue on my pace. There has been much about unconditional love in the hurt of relationships that shouldn’t be like that on my heart lately – But God wants us to love even in the hurt – and that sometimes is incredibly difficult to walk that walk. Blessings and peace to you in the challenge!

  2. says

    “there is beauty in the hard wrestle.” I struggle with the changes in life and in people. Pain from a friend is so hard to bear. May He be your comfort today and every day.

  3. says

    I can relate to your pain, Laura. I’ve been grieving a friendship that went down a similar path as you’ve hinted here that yours has. I think of her everyday and pray for God’s grace in her life and mine, but the ache doesn’t go away fast enough. I’ll be praying for you and covet your prayers for me. Thanks for your authentic heart!

  4. says

    “Sometimes the season changes before I’m ready”

    Yes, Laura. I cried into my husband’s shoulder last night. We had a lovely trip this weekend visiting my daughter at college, and while I’m happy to be back home with him, the house is awfully quiet.

    Praying for us both.

  5. says

    Thank you for this beautiful glimpse into your heart on a quiet morning – your descriptive words make us feel like we are right there in the quiet with you.

  6. says

    I think I’m in a similar situation, friend. It hurts so much. My daughter is involved, too, and we’ve been stumbling around for two months.

    P.S. I like hearing your poetry again!

  7. says

    I like hearing your poetry again, too, Laura. I feel your pain about people who keep secrets. And people who drink too much (especially common among theater people).

    Maybe it’s all worth it because you used the word “brumal” in a poem? 🙂

  8. says

    People drive me absolutely crazy. Just bonkers. Then I remember that I’m one of them. Then I remember that I’m probably a bigger mess than most of them, and I get quiet and feel sad and sorry for getting so bent out of shape, also for being so flawed, myself. I could feel the sadness in this post. It goes perfectly with the changing of the seasons and the preparing for beautiful things to sleep…or die. A few weeks ago, I looked to see how far you are from me (b/c I’m in a neighboring state), and the answer is really far, which is a shame, b/c I’d take you out for some sort of frothy pumpkin Starbucks drink…

  9. says

    So happy to hear your voice reading your words. Happy, too, that your void of new poetry meant a revisiting of this timely one. All in the right time, yes.
    Those hurts, especially to a poetic heart like yours, do hurt. May the beauty you see and share be a balm to your own heart, if not of understanding, certainly of comfort and trust. A tender hug of appreciation for who you are.

  10. says

    You step gingerly, bending down to scoop up handfuls of images and memories like dew from morning grass blades, and they trickle through slowly as you ponder them and capture their essence, like poetry, to share with the rest of us.

    You live a lyrical life.

    And I? I clomp around in oversized boots, clutzy, awkward, missing it all, crushing some of it underfoot. Until you point and sigh and I turn and stand next to you for a moment, and you whisper, “Look, Ann. Look here.” And I gasp at the tender, delicate web of words you have spun.

  11. says

    I suppose I hold on to the way things are, as well… but how else could I manage to be so surprised by the changing of the seasons? Those first blooms and buds in spring… the early summer evening when I drive home from a meeting and realize that it is still daylight… autumn’s first colors or frost… those first snow flakes of winter. I LOVE the surprise! Maybe some friendships are seasonal too… hard to let go of, even with the thorns deep in our flesh, but wait and wonder what the surprise is going to be. Maybe…

  12. says

    It hurts to be betrayed in such a way Laura. I am so sorry.
    The poetry will come. I know it will. For now it is just dormant in your soul – waiting for just the right moment.
    Love you Laura.

  13. says

    I had to link and run this morning, but I’m glad I came back to read your words. Beauty in the hard wrestle–yes, clinging to this.

    And you know,those words sound just like poetry. (At least to my ears–but what do I know of poetry?)

  14. says

    Laura-very late to the party here–8 pm on the west coast.

    I would concur with my friend Nancy–your words DO sound like poetry. melodic, beautiful, painting a picture with showing but not telling.

    and my favorite line? the same,’there is beauty in the hard wrestle.’
    how you string words along so beautifully.

  15. says

    Lovely to hear your voice, Laura, but sad to read of your pain 🙁
    May the words from my country bless you beloved writer friend: Kia kaha, kia toa, kia manawanui, (be strong, be brave and be warm/big hearted)

    No reira waiho ko te aroha o Te Matua Kaha Rawa hei korowai mou.
    May the love of Almighty God enfold you!
    When life gets tough like this I remind myself that these light afflictions are but for a moment[ on God’s time scale!!] but are working for us an exceeding weight of glory. I find that comforts when little else can.
    Praying for breakthrough in your difficult situation.
    Lots of Love.

  16. says

    Winter is upon us and the end of an era soon. Time marches on and the drummer beats. We slow down because of age, and in our spirit we wish to dance run and play.
    God holds our tomorrow, and the milk that is spilt today, he will wipe it up with angel wings.

  17. says

    “I may limp for the rest of my days but I’m holding on for the blessing.”

    Yes, me too!

    I loved how you interspersed painful thoughts in the middle of peaceful reflection. This life is like that.

    Beautiful poem!

  18. says

    This makes me want to sit beside you in the quiet, squeeze your hand.

    I’m sorry you’re hurting, Laura. The beauty you wring from the pain is breathtaking.

  19. says

    Poetry eludes me these days too.

    I’m so sorry for the betrayal and wounding. (And the cold – insult upon injury.) May God grant you the blessing of the persecuted and the assurance of His unwavering fidelity. If your grasp starts to slip, He will not let you go.

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