Thoughts on Finishing the Work

On Good Friday, Bill Wolf and a gigantic cadre of musicians brought Wolf’s Easter: Stories & Songs show back home to Knoxville. It was the show’s first return to the city in five years and its first time at the historic Bijou Theatre. It was also the culmination of many months of effort for the players and the production team.

It ended with me driving home in the rain. Of course, even then, it was never really over.

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Easter Stories and Songs

This week leading up to Easter is referred to as Holy Week, or Passion Week, in many of our Christian traditions. We set aside this week to read through the Gospel accounts and remember the final days and sufferings of Christ. Good Friday is when we generally mark the crucifixion, where Jesus sacrificed himself for our atonement.

Friday night at the Bijou Theatre in Knoxville, Tenn. Bill Wolf, theologian and singer-songwriter – and Foundling House contributer, will be presenting Easter Stories and Songs alongside a collection of talented musicians. The evening will be a mixture of narrative storytelling interspersed with music and scripture of the final days of Christ leading up to His death on the cross and His resurrection.

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We lost a baby

I say by way of explanation
To my colleague in the Math Department,
A justification for the
Discrepancy in the math:
Five pregnancies but only four at home,
Three girls and a boy.
I want credit for that fifth pregnancy,
The hardest of them all, even though half as long,
As if it were some achievement to put on my resume
Instead of my body’s greatest failing.

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Flash Fiction: Re-a-li-TEE-VEE

Look.

Although you can barely make anything out, looking as you are from such an odd angle. You are high in the air looking down. Now zooming in, you’re the eye of a helicopter traffic cam on television news.

A young girl’s face is pressed against the pumpkin-orange glass of a convenience store. Her features distorted against the glass wet with her tears, her feet are frozen in place.

Her eyes are looking through the glass at the flashing blue/white lights of police cruisers. Her skin pale orange from the tinted glass, her eyes wide and brown, panic enlarged and pleading.
Look. Don’t turn away.

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When I think of Heaven: What It Means to Have a Favorite Band

I met my then-future wife in college. Our first date was on December 17, 1996, and just a few days afterward, we each went home for Christmas, her to Hot Springs, AR and me to Orlando. We were a time zone away from each other, and cell phones were yet to be a thing. I knew I’d be talking to her sparingly, and I also knew I was deeply smitten. It’s a hard place to be—young, in new love, and a thousand miles apart.

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Book Review: A Restless Age

Sometimes I look at my classroom of college students and wonder what happens to shape some twenty-something-year-old faces into smooth lakes of calm with nearly perpetual smiles, and others into relief maps with worry-lined foreheads and mouths that look like they haven’t laughed in weeks. What events and habits of life and mind have already formed such young faces?

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the death of fire

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to weep, a time to laugh; a time to mourn, a time to dance…”
~ Ecclesiastes 3:1, 4

Image by debowscyfoto from Pixabay

 

Ashes to ashes,
we all fall down.

We are born delicate, by death of Fire,
the flames no longer leaping on the hearth,
nor spinning in embroidered skirts of smoke
to the wild music of a living dance,
to the beat of drums and merry hearts.

No, the dance ceases;
the laughter is an echo.
We repent in rags and bathe in soot
for the sheer anticipation of
the death of God.

Brand your mark across my forehead, Dying One.
Tattoo it here, on mind, on heart, on body:
Forty days and forty nights of
                  remembering and mourning.
Forty days and forty nights of
                  hunger in body and soul.
Forty days and forty nights of
                  judgment by fire and flood.
Forty days and forty nights of
                  silence screaming in my ears.
Forty days and forty nights
                  is not that much to ask of me except that
                               I’m hungry.
                               I’m hungry, Lord:

                  for soot,
                  for silence,
                  for sorrow,
                  for salvation.

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