Life in Death's Valley

Dry bones will live.

God did not make Adam from dust in 24 hours

but drew him forth

Dust to dust, dust to form, form to living soul

calling him from the aeons

From ages of sleep into eternal consciousness

So how can I expect to know you in a single glance,

or even a hundred?

Imago Dei

I want to BE. I want the light of the universe’s stars to spread out from my fingertips. That quivering, hidden — what is it? breath? pulse? light? song? — that thing buried in the center of my being, that thing that will out — more than out; grow, expand, I becoming myself because its wings, unfurled, unveil my being.

The song of a thousand cherubim nests in silent cacophony within me. I know for what I have always been destined, and it fills me with an unbearable longing and a fear that I will lose myself in the greatness — or if not in the greatness, in my very smallness.

And where do I begin, now? Where to find and sustain that being, so fragile as its manifestation is? How to be faithful to it, without losing it in the search? How to keep fear from drowning it?

And meanwhile:

Imago dei
 — I know not of what I speak. I know not what utter, consuming fire of God lies in this heart, waiting to break forth in dazzling fury and rout these shadows I mistake for home. Because of what I am-not, I cannot grasp what I am. I fear it; no, desire it. I seek it and I lose it. It is all I live for and the thing that I imagine hounds me unto death. Yet if the shadows would but finally flee, I know I would see my love as I always knew it, never to lose it again.

Sometimes no answer is good; sometimes we are meant to sit with our questions, or our longings. If we silence them too readily, what will we steer our course by? We risk becalming ourselves, for without some darkness you cannot see the North Star.

Someone would wish that we stay becalmed, far from home but too stupid to realize it, too content with our little diversions of celebration and fireworks to think or care about anything else.

“Live for the moment”; is that not what we hear and applaud? But we are so busy looking at the moment that we do not see the great saga that each moment is a part of.


The Soul’s well-sated,

Too well sated,

Filled with sweets and good things,

Things that leave no room for longing,

Nourishing longing,

And emptiness and silence,

      and questions

Deep questions

Questions without beginning or end

Longings that dive down deep

Silence that leaves room for Asking

Eternal emptiness

Where the soul meets the void

And sees the stars

And heaven’s depths

And knows its name.


There is a cry in my heart that will not be silent until it has found its harmony. It was never made to cease, only to grow louder and be made whole. It may be groaning; it may be a song. Though it sounds like a groan, it must be a song, because it’s searching for the melody it was made to be a part of. I look for pieces of it here, and even now it grows, ebbs and flows, finding and doubting what it has found, but never receding to what it once was. Never does it stop searching, waiting, and hoping; always is it becoming more itself. One glorious day it will be a symphony, but in the valley of death I will be content even to piece together the first movement.