Saturday, December 10, 2016

Giving Is Joy 12-10-16


Putting on hat.  Yanking on boots.
Pulling on gloves.  Basket of fruits.

Opening door.  Holding on tight.
Wind hits my face.  Everything's white..

Weather is bad.  Comforts forgo.
Making my way.  Footprints in snow.

Taking short steps.  Carefully now.
Slipped on some ice.  I'm not sure how.

Old narrow road.  Old man like me.
Walking along.  Something to see.

Tall leafless trees.  Stretching above.
Creator's art.  Painted with love.

Deep heavy snow.  Bushes weighed down.
Bright colored lights.  Almost sundown.

Cold seizes breath.  Fingers are numb.
Now getting close.  Music has come.

Christmas music.  Melodies sweet.
Memory's peace.  Always complete.

Up a few steps.  Knock on the door.
Greeted with smile.  Warm wooden floor.

Welcomed inside.  Rosy red face.
'O Holy Night'.  Snug fireplace.

More Christmas songs.  Humble abode.
Gift of fresh fruit.  Nothing is owed.

Kindness is sweet.  "Thank you's" are said.
Then back at home.  Ready for bed.

Said I, a prayer.  "Making new friend.
Giving is joy.  Pays dividend."

©2016 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, December 3, 2016

I'm Ready, You Bet! 12-8-16


I was with Jesus when He healed the ear.
It's then that I found that I hadn't a fear.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when He was arrested.
It's then I found out that I had been tested.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when He had been judged.
It's then, by Him, I felt I'd been nudged.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when He had been whipped.
It's then I found out that I had been skipped.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when they took all He had.
It's then that I found out that He wasn't bad.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when they nailed Him tight -
It made me just sick just to see such a sight.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when He called out to God.
It's then I felt that this all seemed quite odd.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when He was sealed in the tomb.
I felt very guilty, surrounded by gloom.

A voice echoed, "Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
But I said- with a drop of sweat on my brow,
"I'm sorry, but I'm not quite ready yet."

I was with Jesus when He rose from the dead.
It's then I felt better, much better instead.

Jesus asked, Will you follow me now?
Are you ready to pay your debt?"
And I said, while wiping the sweat from my brow,
"Oh yes I am ready!  I'm ready, you bet!"

But He said, "Don't bother.  I have in your place."
It's then I learned love and infinite grace.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Cabin Of Logs 12-03-16

Myakka River State Park, FL (Cabin 4)

So far, far away from the bright city lights
down a dusty and old gravel road -
was a quaint little cabin built of full logs.
where nary a rafter was bowed.

So sturdy and stately it stood among trees.
It's woodwork was sawn and rough-cut.
The spring on the screen door resisted my pull.
I stepped in and door had slammed shut.

It seemed to be saying, "I don't want you here"
protesting that I had stepped in.
But I hadn't listened to what it had said,
consumed by the cabin within.

Such workmanship done by archaic tools
was special and second to none.
Amazed, I imagined a pile of logs,
then stacking them all one by one.

Outside I heard chirping from one nearby marsh.
The palms seemed to tower too high.
The trails went on for mile after mile
while groups of great egret walked by.

From grasses quite tall to warm river banks,
on white sands or next to a tree,
the gators would thankfully come and then go
and have little int'rest in me.

As days would wind down the chill would set in.
I'd gather up good burning wood.
So many old thoughts would go through my head
that only my God understood.

A couple of hours before the sunrise,
made time for a long morning prayer.
The flames from the brick and stone fireplace
had warmed up the crisp, wintry air.

The orange dancing flames were having such fun
and seemed to not tire at all.
As radiant heat would rise from the hearth,
dark shadows would dance on the wall.

I stared out the panes of the old window glass.
The view was a sight to behold.
I treasure the pictures I burned in my mind
in thoughts much too hard to be told.

The days were so peaceful.  The nights black as coal.
Enjoyed I, each moment I had.
But then the day came when I had to leave
and yes, it had made my heart sad.

I packed up my clothes and I swept out the place.
My stomach was knotted somewhat.
The spring on the screen door resisted my push.
I stepped out and door had slammed shut.

It seemed to be saying that it changed its mind
and thought it quite rude that I leave.
But it didn't know that I'd rather stay there
and it'd never know that I grieve.

I drove that dusty and old gravel road
straight-way to the city of lights.
But heart was not with me.  I left it back there -
with the cabin of logs and the sights.

©2016 louis gander ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Sunday, November 27, 2016

A Great Big Heart 11-27-16


Here sitting on an old park bench,
I watched the folks walk by.
They scurried here and scurried there
for something else to buy.

Surrounded by bright colored lights
were reindeer and a sleigh.
I saw a girl searching 'round
and this I heard her say,

"I can't find Jesus anywhere.
The stable's not in view.
The shepherds should be somewhere here.
The wise men should be too.

"Where is Christmas?  Where is Christmas?"
she came to me and asked.
To answer her great question seemed
a hopeless, futile task.

I thought awhile before reply.
I hoped it would suffice.
I felt so dumb and speechless but
I offered this advice.

"You know that Christmas isn't Santa,
nor presents under tree.
It isn't fancy colored lights
nor anything we see.

"You can't find Christmas in the mall
or here along the street.
And Christmas isn't green or red.
All that is just deceit.

"Impressed, I am, how smart you are.
You question everything.
I'm glad you know of Jesus' birth
and why the church bells ring.

"No, Christmas isn't what they think
and these folks must admit -
if Christmas isn't in their hearts,
they'll simply never find it."

She stood there quiet for a bit,
then turned and walked away.
She walked in thought quite slowly, so
I prayed she was okay.

I hoped I didn't puzzle her
or tear her dreams apart...
But then she turned, called back to me,
"I have a great big heart!"

I didn't see her after that
but knew she'd be okay.
This bench and I hold memories
as others run astray.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, November 19, 2016

You Know Me Well 11-19-16


My breath on pane
is all in vain.
It's bitter cold outside.
With fog on glass,
the hours pass.
I swallow deep, my pride.

The plume atop
my quill would stop
with only me to thank.
There are no herds
of rhyming words.
My frozen mind is blank.

I pray to God
but find it odd
that rhyme's don't come to me.
At any cost
I am so lost.
Is this just meant to be?

But it is rare,
that I would dare
to leave before I write.
Though inkwell's here
words disappear
on parchment through the night.

Not thinking 'prose'
my words are froze
just as it is outdoors -
with barren trees
all stripped of leaves,
like extinct dinosaurs.

Now I confess
that I digress
from what I want to say.
It sure does seem
I'm losing steam.
My poem drifts away.

Should I explore
my mind some more -
that's vast as the frontier -
or let you think
I'm out of ink
and end this poem here?

Oh, what's the use
for such a truce?
I'm finished anyhow.
I sure can tell
you know me well.
You're raising one eyebrow.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, November 12, 2016

Come With Me 11-12-16


Please come with me while we stand tall
and give to those awaiting call
who haven't any hope.
My tears run as a waterfall,
pour off my cheeks for one and all.
I don't know how they cope.

Now Susie is a dancer
She's nine, but now has cancer.
She's on a newer drug.
The days are slow.  She sits alone
'tween night and day in twilight zone.
She needs someone to hug.

Meet David with clef palate
who plays on old wood pallet
each long and boredom day.
His mother doesn't have a house.
He's shy and quiet as a mouse
and has nothing to say.

Meet Bobby Jean who's starving -
while turkeys we are carving -
for our Thanksgiving feast.
She needs some clothes and needs a bath.
She did not choose this endless path.
Of these, she is the 'least'.

Meet the Muslim boy, Abdul.
He's beaten hard and it's so cruel.
He studies the Koran.
If you were him, you would be too
and studying a twisted view
to be an evil man.

Please come with me while we stand tall
and give to those awaiting call
who haven't any hope.
My tears run as a waterfall,
pour off my cheeks for one and all.
I don't know how they cope.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, October 29, 2016

Clouds Of Grace 10-29-16


The seconds seem to march on by
as I lay in my bed.
The still, dark room surrounds me as
life's chaos fills my head.

I sought God's great forgiveness here
and prayed His 'will' be done.
I sought His endless blessings too -
His each and every one.

Awakened in the dead of night
brings pain and misery.
Those pins and needles sting me like
a million honey bee.

There's something in my eyes that runs
right down my wrinkled cheeks.
The seconds turn to minutes and
then hours into weeks.

The weeks turn into months and years
as I lay on my bed.
I hear the ticking of the clock
as life hangs by a thread.

A thread that is so fragile and
holds every thought that comes -
and pounds into my painful ears
like noisy, marching drums.

I try to shut my eyes and sleep,
but through the pain and flack -
my tears still win the battle, though
I've tried to hold them back.

My head begins exploding with
anxiety attack,
but so as not to live regret
I yank my muscles back.

This horrid pain has hit me like
a ton or two of brick -
that brings more torture to my ears
with every single 'tick'.

I sought God's will through faithful hope
but must accept this quest -
that when my fragile thread does snap,
I find that God has blessed.

Not maybe how I thought He would -
because this world harms.
But when that fragile thread does snap -
I'll find I'm in His arms.

For Christ endured this torture too.
He knows just how I feel.
So faithfully He carries me
and brings my heart to heal.

He holds me up, takes tension off
that single fragile thread,
so I can float on clouds of grace
that quell my pain instead.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, October 22, 2016

In Your Image 10-22-16


You made me in Your image Lord,
but I broke through the mold.
I thought my way was better so
I didn't do as told.
I lived in curiosity
when I was just a child.
I grew up wanting everything,
was selfish and was wild.

I lived in all my foolishness
and put myself in bubble.
And when I drew my idols in -
it got me into trouble.
One rainy day my bubble burst
and so I sat depressed.
Drenching wet I swallowed pride
that should have been addressed.

If I could start all over Lord,
I'd listen and obey.
And that way I would not be in
the fix I am today.
You'd make me in Your image Lord.
I wouldn't break the mold.
I'd know your way was better and
I'd do as I was told.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, September 24, 2016

An Attitude Of Prayer 9-24-16


The sun was hot.  There was no breeze.
It seemed that nature died -
except annoying croaking frogs
that tore me up inside.

And then those pesky chirping birds
kept on and wouldn't quit!
The peace and quiet fell away.
I thought I'd have a fit.

Emotions begged for me to scream
but logic's chains were fixed.
It seemed that I was torn in two
as all the truths were mixed.

A duck was splashing water and the
crickets pierced my ears.
I even heard a car horn then
that brought me close to tears.

Enjoy the outdoors?  I could not.
The banks were on my heels!
And though I was not guilty, they
had voided my appeals.

My mind was racing to and fro.
I willed to run away -
where I could start a brand new life
where peaceful was the day.

Then wings of sev'ral hummingbirds
had winnowed that still air
which moved me ever closer to
an attitude of prayer.

They seemed to not be bothered by
the things that bothered me.
I once was blinded by this earth...
but now, at last, I'm free!

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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Saturday, September 3, 2016

Very Same Dreams 9-3-16


We fam'lies of leaves were hanging in trees.
Each fam'ly had dreams that were strange.
We all had our reasons for various seasons -
traditions that we wouldn't change.

Now none had predicted that we'd be conflicted
from each on our very own trees.
But roots had ambition to send us nutrition,
yet never a leaf could they please.

I also was one who was selfish with fun.
I knew it and God knew it too.
So loved He the world, a baby was curled,
in manger while chilly winds blew.

I was not above all the leaves of God's love.
No better was I than the rest.
So dropped. I to knees and prayed for all trees
and asked that all leaves would be blessed.

Yet root was the scholar, so it gave a holler
that not over it would they dwell.
The root, very tough, said he'd had enough -
and that's when the most of them fell.

Now when they sought Heaven they all were forgiven,
(at least that's what they had believed).
Yet oh, so enthralled, were the faithful God called -
but not those of them self-deceived.

Then one breezy day, winds tore us away.
We landed in faraway streams.
The next springtime rain it happened again,
when new leaves had very same dreams.

©2016 louis gander - ALL RIGHTS RESERVED

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