Sunday 12 June 2011

Silky Linen Powdered Wings - Brian Coatney's Poems

A Million Thoughts

When a million thoughts
go through your mind,
catch them like butterflies,
so the thinking goes,
bringing every thought captive.

What about those thoughts that
aren’t butterflies though?
Ah ha, to make them into such
takes magic we don’t have
but think we should,

if not to the end of what a soul is,
that butterfly catching and making
is not the doing of us doers,
but the being of the is-er.

This is-er, we find, doesn’t even
catch or take a thought, much less
a million , and morph them
into butterflies, or ask us to.

But in the mystery of the new mind,
not I but Christ, and His
silky, linen effortless way,
powdered wings float everywhere.

This might be in the midst of
all that is excruciating,
but simple it is, and sweet.
And there is where we meet.



I am clay,
traversed or planted in
the ordinary way.

Colors vary,
task to task,
or texture on a given day,

but basically,
this is clay.

Even when a potter’s fantasy,
it’s dirt,
but oh so rich I always say.

Never despise it;
it’s the rudiment of Adam,
putting God on display.

Clay is what I am—
as real as toast and jam.



I was looking for an enlightened place,
free from harangue, toes not stepped on,
where no one spells the word disgrace,
but all is a heavenly Autobahn.

I opened all doors, where one might look—
examined for Diogenes—
a lamp, a rail, a holy book,
security in all of these.

Failing in that, while cynical still,
the Spirit of Christ arrested me,
offered His mind to my now eager will,
as the restful fountain of sanity.

No more did I search externally;
for one’s spirit is lamp and wick to burn,
its only fuel derives not from me,
but the shining of divinity.



The tears falling from
my eyes are many kinds:
the crystal ones, transparent
to the heart of God;
those like rain that refresh,
both in dry and wet times;
the beautifully shaped ones,
as water in a form is;
those varied in their fall,
some filling the eyes,
others running over, then down cheeks,
while others seem to fly out
into air—each falling perfectly;
the ones that pull up everything
the heart needed to purge;
those of joy;
those of grief;
those of anguish;
but all of them from the mother of tears,
from the land of abba,
from bread of life,
from the holy pneuma.
Yes, many kinds of tears land in a bottle
both near and far—
near—the bottle in my hand;
far—the place beyond,
which is all the more like home
the more I see it.



I can always hear from God
straight up,
but often it’s fun to hear Him
through you:
either is fine to do;
the nice thing about the latter way,
is that it’s one of God’s,
thus our, favorite ways to play.

When you don’t know
the straight-up way,
you chase ministers all the time,
frustrated not to get enough,
and this is not a crime, deliberately done,
but doesn’t sound the ultimate chime
of playing things either way.

The main thing is to hear;
yes, without that
one is always guessing,
seeking God’s will like
a dart game with the board
way too far away,
which I would find distressing.

God doesn’t make the game that hard;
serious workers do—
like I once was,
where if you make things too easy,
the game doesn’t fit one’s pride,
leaving one flapping around
without enough to do.
That might dangerously lead
to a look on the inside.

But when it’s OK to score every time,
dart to the bull’s-eye—
oh, not without tension,
and loads of suspense all along
(Please don’t consider those things wrong)—
then the game is always certain and fun,
without unbelief about the outcome
when all is said and done.



There’s the one morosely
held, day after day, in the
threads of matted sweat,
in their loneliness,

watching what the
soul sold itself to get,
fall down into the pit,
while the last fragment
of emptiness it can give,
wastes away in the doldrums.

Looking into the mirror,
sunken sockets mockingly greet —
a face to trade for light,
and in a twinkling, it’s done.

There’s the one resting quietly,
who has found nothing,
and nothing has found him;
therein lies the tale:
to let God go that deep
without bolting,
brings the heavenly water.

This one is no longer enamored with self,
but with the anointing,
a cup that can’t be
lonely any more.

This one will not do;
he will not speak:
but in that rest,
the stillness feeds him.

The garden is inhabited now;
pleasantness drops her dew,
and much there is
for pleasantness to do.



2son said...

Chris, wow, this is so creative. It is exactly part of my hope, that others will take the poems and continue the creative process as you have done. Brian

Chris Welch - 07000INTUNE said...

Thanks so much Brian, was a bit nervous...since this is my mind's eye not necessarily yours as the author