Thursday, December 31, 2020

Aha Moment-um

“We see now how it doesn’t take long to get old” 
Commented Jim as we chatted this morning
 and marveled at the hastier haste of each year. 

From smooth youth to wrinkles
from 'na' to 'aha'
in the ever-present now
time keeps its vow

(this weekend our son is planning on moving out for a few months
so I dug up this song)


I might not miss Matt's mega-laundry heaps that much but
I will miss cooking for him. 
Jim is gone most weeks and I was always glad for
Matt's working-man appetite to give me an excuse to cook
heartier suppers than we women generally choose.

We see now what those before us, tried to tell us those years before 
We understood how swift the surge of moments washes Decade’s shore 
Where we become more tuned to tides that flow so fluidly through us 
While marveling at how each year seems quicker than the previous 

And now we see how easily we get to where our parents were 
When they tried to impact on us the brevity of here-to-there 
While we were busy being much the way that young people still are 
So sure, that time is on their side and getting old is far, so far 

Aha, aha, we say as we see time its timeless truths unfold 
Where we cannot divert the flux bent on turning young people old 
But bear in mind that to be kind is always age-appropriate 
And we are not at the mercy of time but of He who authors it

We see now how we ought to make the most of each and every age 
Where, no matter how old we are change always strives for center stage 
Thus, keeping us astonished by Time’s polished howdy-do and bow 
As it keeps on delivering the aha, of what we see now 

© Janet Martin 

sometimes it feels as if Jim and I turned old-er like this...
He sends me pictures...

as well as he often calls while rolling down the highway.
He is a much better conversationalist than I, so thanks to him
we communicate a lot in spite of miles between!

Happy New Year!!

Let's not look back too long
Or look ahead too far
For we might miss The Very This
Of right here, where we are!

Jim Reeves

Numbers 6:24-26

“The Lord bless you
and keep you;
 the Lord make his face shine on you
and be gracious to you;
 the Lord turn his face toward you
and give you peace.”’

Take Time

Who, at the Hinge of Old Year's end to New Year's start doesn't not contemplate Time?
Farewell, Old Year. do not know what tomorrow will bring. 
What is your life? 
For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.
James 4:14

How will we spend time's coins?
What will we have to show for it;
this mist that appears for a little while,
these days of grass?

1 Peter 1:24-25
All people are like grass,
and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall,
25but the word of the Lord endures forever.” c
And this is the word that was preached to you.

Take time; this thing that transports us from cradle to the silent grave 
It wears the cares and noisy fuss of we abreast its teeming wave 
its momentum of moments metes morn’s virgin streets to you and I 
And gathers as it grants, the fetes that compose Past’s collective sigh 

Take time; Soul’s Sacred Rubicon whereon there is no turning back 
Where the first breath sets us upon an all-important, one-way track 
Where present-sprees and centuries are not so very far apart 
And everybody ought to seize what each dawn frees, with awestruck heart 

Take time to contemplate the Gate that waits to swing but once, for all 
Where nothing else can compensate when it comes to the Gospel Call 
And no one can afford to scoff and cater to indifference 
When it comes to the subject of Offering and Deliverance 

Take time to get down on your knees and make peace with the God of grace 
For who knows when this life will cease and we will meet Him face to face 
Where those who believe will receive faith’s glorious inheritance 
But those who rejected God’s pleas, to suffer Choice’s consequence 

Take time; its transitory isle nobody outsmarts or outlives 
Our mist appears a little while then vanishes to He who gives 
And what would be the point of it, but for the opportunity 
Of a lifetime, to inherit what everyone must wait to see 

© Janet Martin 

I heard a minister make the comment that 
if everyone while on earth was given but a glimpse of either Heaven or hell,
hell would be empty; so awesome Heaven, so awful hell

Before this year ends, if you have not done so,
 please do not put off what tomorrow does not promise to give;
opportunity to make your peace with God
and receive the gift of eternal life
as you repent and believe.

1 John 1:9
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins
 and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

(It's powerful to listen to the words of this song as if it is written
for each of us, personally!)

Wednesday, December 30, 2020

Catch Me If You Can

Away, away, ebbs break of day 
Dawn’s newest nuance flows 
Its height of bloom soon wooed away 
Like petals from a rose 

How soon, how soon the afternoon 
Folds up its gleaming fan 
And fills the shadows with a tune 
Of catch-me-if-you-can 

A-tsk, a-tsk, the brooding dusk 
Is like a clucking hen 
She spreads her wings over her chicks 
And draws them home again 

© Janet Martin 


With Fresh Surprise


Where green had been,
White stucco sweeps...

...roll out to meet dark denim deeps

Where we, caught on the tides of change 
Gape at what nothing can estrange 
Like moonrise on dusky skies, pinned

Where green had been, white stucco sweeps 
Roll out to meet dark denim deeps 

The resting earth is kissed and tucked 
Beneath the heavens, sparkle-shucked 

Where we, caught on the tides of change 
Gape at what nothing can estrange 

Like moonrise on dusky skies, pinned 
As long and blue shadow-flues thinned 

Until the hand that none can stay 
Brushes the pretty world away 

And we are left peering into 
The cleft that centuries ran through 

Where, for a bit we own the eyes 
That gaze at it with fresh surprise 

© Janet Martin 

Psalm 39:4-6
4Lord, make me to know my end,
And what is the measure of my days,
That I may know how frail I am.
5Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths,
And my age is as nothing before You;
Certainly every man at his best state is but vapor. Selah
6Surely every man walks about like a shadow;
Surely they [b]busy themselves in vain;
He heaps up riches,
And does not know who will gather them.

Tuesday, December 29, 2020

Height of Perfection


There is

a point

in life

when we





When we




at last





© Janet Martin


So Soon Strewn Behind


This poem 'happened' as I was thinking about my brother-in-law and his wife 
about to hand over the home-farm to their son and wife 
who are excited to become parents soon,
 My brother-in-law will leave the place he has called home all his life,
because he took over the family-farm from his mom (not so very long ago, it seems)
Needless to say, this is a Bittersweet time.

The above photo was taken five years ago at Christmas
as we drove in the laneway,
 knowing doors would be flung open to warmth from the woodstove pouring through,
tables laden with lovingly-prepared favourites, 
and to laughter, so much laughter💗
We had intended to have a final, farewell dinner here this year 
but that didn't happen due to Covid-restrictions.

This wheel-and-deal of daily grind 
This ever forward-flight 
Grants only what we leave behind 
So, hold, but not too tight 

This here-and-now that steals our breath 
With oceanic wave 
Always succumbs to shore-line’s death 
And Bygone’s brimming grave 

The old-farmhouse where once we grew 
And knew love’s finest joys 
Is fondly handed over to 
Tomorrow’s girls and boys 

While we with tear-wreathed fondness gaze 
Across the quickened years 
And wonder at life’s age-old ways 
…how swift time disappears 

For we, in the thick of love’s fight 
Abreast the westward tide 
Often forgot the sacred rite 
That tunes the common stride 

Where moms and dads, not long ago 
Wore winsome threads of youth 
Ah, when did Wisdom’s crown bestow 
The snows of Telling Truth 

How near the yesterday still seems 
When we with star-blind eyes 
Peered through Kaleidoscope of Dreams 
Toward some far-off Prize 

How subtle is the pledge that drives 
Its weightless wedge between 
Hellos always hinged to goodbyes 
What is to what has been 

As we become the meeker ranks 
Of much less understood 
Yet gladder in the humbler thanks 
Of knowing God is good

The measure of a photograph
Though fine and fitly framed
Is always but the aftermath
Of what the Past has claimed

So whether we are young or old
The thing to keep in mind
Is to treasure the moment-gold
That soon is strewn behind

How soft and suave the hours fly
Through living's loving fuss
To fill the framework of a sigh
With memories of Us

© Janet Martin

Psalm 90:12
So teach us to number our days, 
That we may gain a heart of wisdom.

Some-Things or Some-One To Sing About

Proverbs 12:25
Anxiety weighs down the heart of a man, 
but a good word cheers it up.

He wakens me morning by morning, 
wakens my ear to listen like one being instructed.

Eyes to see and ears to hear; 
Mouths, His worthy praise to spill 
Where the headlines broadcast fear 
God’s Word whispers ‘peace be still’ 

Hope to heap the heart with joy 
Faith to trust Invisible 
Love to heal hate’s hurtful ploy 
God who makes it possible 

Season-circuit none can sway 
Seed instilled with harvest-fare 
Morning to brush night away 
God who hears the humble prayer 

Laughter’s medicine to cheer 
Let its sparkles fill the room 
Time is just the way, my dear 
To God, greater than doom’s gloom 

Beauty breathed to common ground 
Duty to bequeath the task 
Countless mercies that abound 
God who knows before we ask 

Tea kettles with home-sweet tune 
Happiness in simple things 
Yellow cello of high noon 
God who holds and tunes its strings 

Courage, not by mortal creed 
But as we confess our sin 
We are given what we need 
By the grace of God within 

A most able Hand to hold 
Though some doubt His wherewithal 
Whether we are young or old 
God so loves us above all 

Longing’s sacred appetite 
Heaven-glimpses framed in pink 
Poetry too grand to write 
As we marvel at God’s ink 

God with each and every one 
To all who believe, hope’s door 
Then, when this small life is done 
We with God forevermore 

© Janet Martin 

Monday, December 28, 2020

Prelude to the Fulfilled Promise

For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities--
his eternal power and divine nature--
have been clearly seen, 
being understood from what has been made, 
so that people are without excuse.

Dusk was a divine blend of mauve, pink and blue...

He flings fragments of grandeur to the frames of earth and sky 
And draws from worship’s wonder the pure homage of ‘oh my’ 
Oh so much that we wished for disappears as we behold 
The beauty from a Troubadour whose art never grows old 

He exceeds expectation without stipulation’s fence 
The Author of elation showcases His evidence 
And extends with His handiwork on sky and land and sea 
An open invitation to Creation’s Gallery 

Ah, who could afford the price of a daily ‘looking fee’ 
If God would change his mind and not awe humankind for free 
If we needed a ticket to see clouds or sun-moon-stars 
Or to feast eyes on the Beauty of earth’s four-season bars 

He manifests his qualities, eternal and divine 
In the wondrous intricacies of Creation’s design 
So that we are without excuse in recognizing He 
Who spills His transcendental proof on sky and land and sea 

We are treated to glimpses of God’s Supreme Majesty 
Ere Heaven stuns the faithful ones with promised wait-and-see 
He tells us these are but the outer fringes of His ways 
The faintest whispers sparking the prelude to endless praise 

© Janet Martin 

The Bard to the Ballad or Sky Full of Thorns


It's hard to form 'The Poem' 
exactly like we feel it,
isn't it?
But, if each and every one is mustered
 (if not mastered), 
all for the glory of God,
then each one is perfectly worth it, 
imperfections included.

Sometimes I crave your consent without scavenging the sky 
But still, you remain distant, like the shadow of a sigh 
And I must satisfy myself with hints of what might be 
While learning the allure and anguish of you, Poetry 

How is it that delight and angst are so closely aligned 
A tango of persistence and fulfillment intertwined 
Where the hunter and hunted flit between the head and heart 
Like flickers of a candle or precision of a dart 

The world is full of whispers taunting, haunting acumen 
I want to snare you like the pearl of raindrops, in a pen 
To spill into ink-flowers that will bloom from age to age 
And flourish in a garden, yellow and brittle with page 

Sometimes I wish that you would yield your mist and mirage ways 
And humour Poet’s hunger with the perfect twist of phrase 
But Poetry, it seems to me, you give your head a toss 
And prompt me to remember who, between us two, is boss 

Oh, what a love-and-hate-routine is this syllabic chase 
Like pictures on a phantom screen that I can almost trace 
You drive me wild with glints of what a Masterpiece would be 
If I were more than just a child of verses, Poetry 

You taunt me with an essence that methinks is kin to love 
And I can almost touch you, but am not quite tall enough 
So, I must satisfy myself with top-shelf tippy-toes 
And bear the prick of thorns while reaching, reaching for the rose 

© Janet Martin 

Hope Is Life's Highway to Heaven...

Altar after altar after altar
Sacrifice after sacrifice after sacrifice
every morning and night 
day after day after day
week after week after week
 year after year after year
decade after decade
to pay for the sins of the people
and to remind them 
of the mercy and grace of God
until One Day 
One Sacrifice
For All!
 to hear the above thoughts spoken of so wonderfully!
Listen to the whole message to hear 
 the Greatest Story of profound love
authoring Living Hope!

Hope is life’s highway to Heaven 
Hope is joy through sorrows met 
By the Promise God has given 
As the Temple-veil was riven 
And the sins of man forgiven 
By His Son who paid our debt 

Hope is life’s exceeding glory 
Nothing annuls Calvary 
Though its bloody scene is gory 
For our state so mean and sorry 
Love suffered Redemption’s Story 
And authored Hope’s Surety 

Hope is mankind’s consolation 
In a world so full of loss 
For the sake of soul’s salvation 
The Lord and God of creation 
Did not doom us to damnation 
But broke sin’s curse on the cross 

Hope is life’s breathtaking beauty 
King of king’s humility 
Bore more than a ‘tour of duty’ 
He beheld our hopeless pity 
Then secured, through death, the Vict’ry 
That grants life eternally 

Hope is not a fickle feather 
Dangling on a chain of whim 
Hope is the unfailing tether 
That by faith will help us weather 
Time, until we altogether 
Look upon love’s scars and Him 

© Janet Martin 

Of Open Ark-door

Whether morn is gold or gray
Mercy molds each brand new day

This is the day the Lord has made.
We will rejoice and be glad in it
Psalm 118:24

Ah, here it is, A brand new This; The day the Lord has made 
He crowns Bygone’s echo-abyss with Mercy’s balustrade 
Where want will lure but hope secures what we all see in part 
And heaven only knows the highs and lows it will impart 

Ah, here are we; humanity, the apple of God’s eye 
He watches over you and me through every low and high 
Where dreams will break and hearts will ache and hope will feel quite frayed 
But we are all wrapped in love’s shawl; this day the Lord has made 

Ah, here he IS; no genesis or exodus to He 
Who crowns Bygone’s soldered abyss with Opportunity 
Where one and all receive equal shares in time’s latest lease 
And play a part within the heart of Mercy’s Masterpiece 

Ah, here it is; the Truth of this; the day the Lord has made 
Is like a kind and holy kiss of God’s grace, un-betrayed 
Where He does not extend for aught Time’s sacred season-sum 
But flings ashore the Ark’s wide door and beckons to all, ‘come’ 

© Janet Martin 

2 Pet.3:9
The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, 
as some count slackness, 
but is longsuffering toward us, 
not willing that any should perish 
but that all should come to repentance.

Sunday, December 27, 2020

Benediction and Resolution

I went on a hymn-hunt after the message today
after the man who brought the message shared the lyrics.
Thank-you Richard!
 (also for the last line in this poem)

This benediction to the Old Year is more like a resolve for the New,

To grasp with renewed wonder 
To timeless truths of old 
And satisfy heart-hunger 
With what hands cannot hold 

To sense the thread of moments 
Unravel as they weave 
A sacred recrudescence 
Deigned by Who we believe 

To cling with firm conviction 
To He who does not shift 
And anchor each ambition 
In hope’s unashamed gift 

To not become too weary 
To do the good I/we ought 
But press toward the vic’try 
In a good fight well-fought 

To guard against the anguish 
Of disillusionment 
And not let love’s cause languish 
In selfish discontent 

To trust the Rock of Ages 
Amidst the raging gale 
And hold on to the Pages 
That Last Gasp will unveil 

To pay closer attention 
(lest God forbid, it slips) 
To the gift of redemption 
And Soul-dier it equips 

To not let vain emotion 
Control life’s little lease 
But make love's sole devotion 
Salvation’s Centerpiece 

© Janet Martin 

Joshua 23:11,12
Take good heed therefore unto yourselves, 
that ye love the LORD your God…

I'm Glad To Know


When focus gets out of fix
and faith gets out of focus
it's time to fix faith's focus!

Yesterday on my walk it felt a bit like peering into the future...
couldn't see very far!

This morning a bit of yesterday's 'future' has unfolded 
bringing with its flurry, for some, celebration, for others, sorrow. 
So it will be until time is fulfilled.

I’m glad I cannot see beneath to thoughts you do not speak 
Or sorrows that yet wait to press their tear upon my cheek 
Or trials to perfect the fledgling Faith authored by he 
Who loves us so He clarifies our authenticity 

The best and worst yet veiled by moments time has not yet spilled 
Through hours not yet come to pass in days not yet fulfilled 
Can entertain our guess and humour fancy’s raving ranks 
But none can see the pieces yet that wait to fill yon blanks 

I’m glad that we can know, He whom by faith we have believed 
Is able to keep that which we commit, by faith achieved 
Where between now and when we meet Then, near or far away
I’m glad to know, that God, not men, will have the final say 

© Janet Martin 

2 Tim.1:12
nevertheless I am not ashamed, 
for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded 
that He is able to keep what I have committed 
to Him until that Day.

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
The same was in the beginning with God.
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
In him was life; and the life was the light of men.
And the light shineth in darkness; and the darkness comprehended it not.”
(John 1:1-5)

Saturday, December 26, 2020

For Day-to-Day Dancers


Where every high is always hinged to possible pitfalls 
And every low is always tinged with hope because of grace 
Where beauty of beginnings juxtaposes yester-halls 
That weave a labyrinth of echoes no finger can trace

Where we all suffer stumbles that make sacred what remains 
Where skin-thin walls are thick enough to keep out curious eyes 
To worlds that spill through meager frames like fenceless fens and plains 
 Where thought is like a footloose fellow full of smiles and sighs 

Where what we learn is never quite enough to close the book 
On lessons that still wait to teach us what only time can 
Where we will always find something to cheer us if we look 
Where things that really matter have not changed since time began 

Where no one can take credit for what God alone designed 
And none of us can edit no matter how hard we try 
Where what we touch of seasons is soon dust-to-dust resigned 
Where we are all far more than meets the ardor of the eye 

Where star-strewn streets and clumsy feet are oddly interknit 
Where longing’s choreography sustains the dreamer’s dance 
And heavy brooms sweep out ballrooms for ballads not yet writ 
Waiting to make their debut on a floor of Second-chance 

© Janet Martin

Something about this morning's snowy 'trek-and spec' sparked this poem...
(maybe part of it started when my foot caught in a big torn seam
 in my snow pants and landed me on my hands and head 
before I knew what hit me)😀
Life's like that sometimes. We're just cruising along
feeling pretty fleet of foot and fancy when...kerplunk!!

Friday, December 25, 2020

Celebration and Contemplation Christmas Poem

Merry White Christmas!!
(getting up early to put on a turkey meant a few hours of quiet reflection)

Sometimes I look at my children and think,
'do you have any idea how MUCH I love you?!!'
Sometimes I wonder if that's what God thinks 
when He looks at His children/us!
'do you have any idea how MUCH I love you?!!'
He certainly did all He could to prove it, didn't He?!!
Now it's up to us how we choose to reply

Lo, unto us is born the Victor of the grave
Hail, on this blessed morn the One who is mighty to save 

Behold, the hope of man through love that does not fail 
But broke the bond that Eve began, so death cannot prevail 

Sing, for a King IS come, not on royal display 
But lying in a trough among the beasts, upon the hay 

Oh come, and come with haste like the shepherds of old 
Follow the Star unto the place where Humble Faith beholds 

The gift, from God to man, that Bethlehem received 
To set in motion Mercy’s plan that Calvary achieved 

Where crowned with cruel thorns and stripped of dignity 
Beaten amidst hurrahs and scorn then nailed upon a tree 

His suffering, horrible, and as his life-blood flowed 
He paid in full, once and for all the awful debt we owed 

But death could not contain Jesus, the son of God 
A rock could not constrain the Rock of Ages to the sod 

Then sing with renewed joy, the victor of the grave 
Sing, for no power can destroy the One, mighty to save 

Forbid, forbid we hear of what God gave for us 
Then turn a cold and careless ear rejecting Him, Jesus 

Forbid we turn away, choosing His wrath instead 
Of love, who that first Christmas Day knew all that lay ahead 

Lo, unto us is born the Victor of the grave 
Hail, on this blessed morn the One who is mighty to save 

© Janet Martin 

As I listened to the glorious passage below, last night
I was utterly smitten with sorrow for the joy that is rejected by so many.
Rejection is different than being ignored or forgotten.
Rejection is deliberate!
Yet SO many choose to reject the Saviour of the soul,
choose to reject the One a heavenly host of angels heralded,
choose to reject the One who, with limbs nailed to a cross
wept It, (redemption's work) is finished and died for us
so when we die we may live!
Choose to reject Jesus for whatever pleases them instead!
My prayer this morning is that we read this passage in Luke 2
and a new Light dawns in all of us to draw us to Him
in holy adoration!

Luke 2:1-20 NKJV

Christ Born of Mary

2 And it came to pass in those days that a decree went out from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be registered. 2 This census first took place while Quirinius was governing Syria. 3 So all went to be registered, everyone to his own city.

4 Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, 5 to be registered with Mary, his betrothed [a]wife, who was with child. 6 So it was, that while they were there, the days were completed for her to be delivered. 7 And she brought forth her firstborn Son, and wrapped Him in swaddling cloths, and laid Him in a [b]manger, because there was no room for them in the inn.
Glory in the Highest

8 Now there were in the same country shepherds living out in the fields, keeping watch over their flock by night. 9 And [c]behold, an angel of the Lord stood before them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were greatly afraid. 10 Then the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which will be to all people. 11 For there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord. 12 And this will be the sign to you: You will find a Babe wrapped in swaddling cloths, lying in a [d]manger.”

13 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God and saying:

14 “Glory to God in the highest,
And on earth peace, goodwill[e] toward men!”

15 So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.” 16 And they came with haste and found Mary and Joseph, and the Babe lying in a manger. 17 Now when they had seen Him, they made [f]widely known the saying which was told them concerning this Child. 18 And all those who heard it marveled at those things which were told them by the shepherds. 19 But Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 Then the shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things that they had heard and seen, as it was told them.