Whenever fog banks drifted ‘cross his tired face and hid him from the love light that was streaming through her eyes, she led him to the waters of the bay where she’d first found him underneath an autumn’s gleaming moonlit skies.
As he looked to the horizon through the blue gold breeze of twilight and his soul began to lift its broken wings, she decided she would meet him on the other side of mem’ry, there to offer him the gift she always brings.
And she loved him there, upon the water, and she knew him there, beside the bay, pledging not to care, if he forgot her, when the fog came back to cloud another day.
She watched him as the seabirds dove and danced with one another in a story that played out upon the skies. And she longed to wade the waters made of teardrops and forever filling up the empty cisterns of his eyes.
And she loved him there, upon the water, and she knew him there, beside the bay, pledging not to care, if he forgot her, when the fog came back to cloud another day…
I feel myself wanting to explain but finding only wrinkled words that fall away like petals when their blossom is dying.
I suppose that’s when poetry comes to help, welling up with its language that has soaked awhile in the soul.
I am not sad, though I have fallen into the great river of sadness flowing within me, within us, around us all.
It does not frighten me now; no longer denying its existence, I have cast upon it the flower of forgiveness (though not perfectly), even into the stretch of it which my faults have fed like a storm-swelled stream.
Joy blooms at the surface, but has a deep root system setting in the fertile soil of sadness.
Tears contain nutrients needed for the flower of joy to unfold. These essentials can be found only where a face has graced the golden ground with its waters.
This is Love’s design for the garden.
It won’t be long…someone will wander through the garden gate, lost and alone in their grief, frightened and confused by the way things are, hurting and unheard.
Maybe I can listen well and lead them to where the roses grow.
“My Champion Tree” (Words, music, vocals, and piano – Danny Potts Recording and mixing – Brandon Blanchard)
This song speaks from the experience of a care partner whose spouse with dementia is nearing the end of her earthly life, perhaps, under palliative care at home, or in a hospice facility. The care partner recalls a time in his own life when he was lost, and experiencing a dark night of the soul. In the depth of his despair, his spouse came with a grace that reminded him of who he was, and always would be, by the power of love. She knew his song, and sang it to him when he’d forgotten it. She showed him back to himself. Because she loved him unconditionally, and had mercy, empathy and compassion, her eyes spoke to him the message that he could not speak to himself. Thus, her gracious gift planted a tree of love, vibrant and green, in the soil of his heart. And, as the tree grew, he came to rest in its sheltering shade. Years later, as her time for departure draws near, he promises to be strong for her, to give her something stable to hold onto in her own dark night. He then realizes that the sapling of love that she planted deep within him in his weakness has become his champion tree, standing tall and true in the forest of fear that can surround care partners when doubt and death cast their shadows. And her love, the love that had found him when he was lost, gives him the strength to be there for her when she “comes to that river.” Of course, this song is also a metaphor for the love of God, which often finds us in the depths of our despair through the lives of those who truly love us.
One day, long ago when the stars in my soul had faded into a thousand black holes, and all that remained of the life I had known had fallen right through some wax paper throne, you walked down the road to the spot where I lay and said with your eyes what my mouth couldn’t say. And all I could see was a halo of light when the inside of me was as black as the night.
You lifted me up with your sweet, gentle grace. You wrote out my name on the lines of your face, and planted your tree in the soil of my heart. From its sheltering shade I will never depart. Now your heavenly flight comes like soft, summer rain, leaving pools in my heart that have nowhere to drain. But I promise to be something strong you can hold as your green leaves in me turn to russet and gold. And the vision I see in the gray of the year is your champion tree in my forest of fear.
So, you won’t be afraid when you come to that river. I’ll be standing right by, but I’ll let you fly to the arms of the Giver. So, I won’t be afraid ‘cause Love keeps us together. What’s true never dies, it just takes to the skies for that deep blue forever… for the deep blue forever.
You must be logged in to post a comment.