Ode on Mortality

Everything to end is made,
To impending loss well laid;
Passing life we hold most dear,
To waiting grave is drawing near;
Fairer mem’ries made in bliss,
Soon their fateful last will kiss;
For, everything will fade,
To nothingness!

On brief margins of loaned time,
Mortal breath expires its rhyme;
Low crescendo notes of woe,
Each rising strain of mirth below;
And, though days as bright and fair,
Draw each frame on-wards graves’ lair;
For, why, the end’s the aim,
And wear, and tear!

This verse was once a featured poem on Spillwords.com

Email screenshot

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Hymn: O, Closer to the Cross!

1 Corinthians 1:18 | and refrain

1 As closer to the Cross I get,
What Perfect Sight I see:
A soul-refreshing view of Grace,
And Love on bloodied tree!

O, closer to the Cross!
Where Jesus died;
O how my vision’s clarified:
I am His, He is mine!

2 As closer to the Cross I get,
My debt contracts away,
As when my pardon meets my gaze:
My night becomes like day!

3 As closer to the Cross I get,
The odor of the earth
Fast passes into nothingness,
In fragrance of His death.

4 As closer to the Cross I get,
Uncloses Book of Life,
And there I see my name secured,
Above the worldly strife.

5 O, for a life beside the Cross!
Fixed, nevermore to roam,
There dying to myself each day—
O, Lamb of God, I come!

6 O Jesus, closer to the Cross,
And nearer everyday;
Deny me not to hasten nigh
And hide from sin, I pray!

Photo by Lorenzo Spoleti on Unsplash

Eagle, Sick

I am looking at the open blue,
expansive as my desire,
sick about my wings;
I drink at my eye past glories
once I had had where crows
and other black birds dare not,
Of flights inclined earthward.
I am like to dying thing,
a leaf that unhinges to gravity
from autumn-shook bough;
I fed overmuch on carrion
till I and the hawk were alike.

O God of sky and bird,
reveal to my diet who I am,
let my pinions stretch at the sky.

Photo Credit: Pinterest

Sonnet: Ah Lord, Your Coming!

Ah Lord, Your coming! to what end is it
For me? Shall I rejoice or early mourn?
Is it of Rapture or of Judgement writ?
Ah, terror-struck I am, I am forlorn!
Dear Lord, one glimpse of my celestial name
In the Lamb’s Book of Life will put to flight
These my terrestrial doubts, to raptured aim
Rise like an eagle of far-reaching sight!
I would love Your appearing naught but sure
As aught of the inerrant Word; I would
With saints of like faith evermore withdraw
From doubt in Grace to Rapture as I should
As one confessing sonship to You Lord:
Let me and Faith, then, breathe with one accord.

Photo Credit: Free-Photos on Pixabay

Sonnet: With John Donne

Thou hast made me, and shall thy work decay?
Repair me now, for now mine end doth haste,
I run to death, and death meets me as fast,
And all my pleasures are like yesterday.

— John Donne

What good shall this my life do me if I
Have not the Holy Ghost than help me waste
Within its vanity, decay and die?
These mortal pleasures now do bitter taste
When I recall the hour of my destruction,
At last when to the grave I am consigned,
And hell is made my everlasting portion—
A wrath of God for sinners’ souls designed.
Dear Lord, repair me now, I pray, and fit
Me skyward: Let the Holy Spirit sweep
This earthly part, and make me whole complete,
Ere death can cast me to her nether deep;
Then, shall I know the good this mortal life
Can offer—that which do give way to Life!

Photo Credit: Unsplash

Sonnet: A Lamp Unto My Feet

Lord, if Your Word’s an ever-shinning Lamp
Unto my feet as It is to my path,
Then, help my soul not miss one Word You say,
But painstakingly of Your will inquire
How ought I to behave t’appease Your ire
Which kindles when I wander from the way,
Which way guards me against Your final wrath,
And boldly ventures me without the camp!
Or—this I would prefer—imprint Your Word
Upon my heart—Lord, everlastingly!
Lest Satan and my mind, with one accord,
Conspire to take away the Word from me,
The Treasure by which do I live and move
And have my being—Treasure that I love!

Photo Credit:

Photo Credit: voltamax on Pixabay

She Walks In Beauty

See her in a virtuous identity,
Resplendent like the sight of dewdrops
That caress a lily in the beauty of dawn;
See her in eloquent graces of modesty,
Like petrichor wafting near from arid sods.
The smile which whitely sits on her cheek
Beams contagiously from off her mild face,
So innocent as she is in her guitless pride.
Her topaz love is faithful as pellucid streams
That impart a wayfarer a sense of home;
Sinners’ lust steps aside: she walks in beauty,
An aura of sanctitude—God’s image!
Her footmarks the sonorous rivulets of hope
To the sere man’s life to rethink the error
Of his or her wayward course.

Photo Credit: mohamed_hassan on Pixabay

Hymn: Into Thy Rest

Matthew 11:28 | and refrain

1 Into Thy rest from toils of care,
From tumult of mortality,
And sinful world beyond repair,
Jesus, I come.

Into Thy rest, I hasten near,
O bid me welcome, take me in,
Till Jordan I can see no more!
Ever at peace, and still within.

2 Into Thy rest and righteousness,
Myself undone and falling short,
But longing still for holiness,
Jesus, I come.

3 Into Thy living streams of life,
And wanting only to be filled,
Beset within by sinning strife,
Jesus, I come.

4 Into Thy surer Citadel,
From sordid habits that defile,
Hurled meward from abodes of hell,
Jesus, I come.

¹5 Into Thy goodness, wide as sky,
Lord, bid me welcome and ascend,
And I will say, though I can’t fly,
“Jesus, I come.”

6 Into Thy Word, the evening Light,
The veiling darkness torn in two:
The Lord in ²unbeclouded sight!
Jesus, I come.

7 Into Thy Spirit, in the Son,
Secured for things that are to be,
There sealed for Rapture, sin unknown,
Jesus, I come.


¹An alternative stanza:

Into Thy goodness wide as sky,
Lord bid me welcome, I pray,
And I will say, without a sigh,
“Jesus, I come!”

²The word unbeclouded is not recognized in the standard dictionary. I borrowed its use from the hymn There Is a Land of Pure Delight by Dr. Isaac Watts.

Photo by Lorenzo Spoleti on Unsplash

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