Monday, May 31, 2021

Farewell, Sweet May


Farewell, sweet belle, the dell is feathered with gold willow-down
The apple-orchard petals dazzle us, then drift, wind-blown
The dust of planting season settles in a green-spun mist
And dandelion-sunbeams turn to haloes silver-kissed

The garden holds the hope of brimming baskets, harvest-heaped
The meadow is the colour of a cup of tea, mint-steeped
The flower border burgeons with the beginning of blooms
Where all through May we sensed the whir of Mother Nature’s looms

The brook is full of minnows teased by Little Boy’s bare feet
The air is full of melodies of chirp and tweet-tweet-tweet
The pasture is a picnic blanket spread ‘neath heaven’s arch
Where dawn to dusk is longer than it was in middle March

Each day is like an invitation everyone receives
A gladness-celebration for the loveliness of leaves
The barren limb is laden with the hymns that you compose
A lush and plush percussion where the pleasant zephyr flows

Farewell, sweet belle, you did your part to make the heart rejoice
You spilled your pansy font and filled the bowers with your voice
Farewell, sweet belle, you always seem to disappear so soon
But we are not too blue because you always bring us June

© Janet Martin

Never Too Old to Cherish...

After a long laundry-line full on Saturday I thought I had a head-start today!

Still lots for tomorrow plus whatever is hatching in hampers!

Whether it's never-ending laundry or other such chore
Soon time leaves us gaping at what is no more

no matter what stage we are in, it is a bubble about to pop!
So cherish💗

In the middle of the muddle
of whatever we are in
Whether kiss and cuddle baby
or a more teen-aged chagrin
Or, perhaps the nest we feathered
with a mother’s heart and soul
Is weathered, like a heart-shaped box
where echoes lilt and toll
Wherever, and whatever season
we are passing through
Pray that we cherish dearly
what will soon bid us adieu

Whether uphill puff and pedal,
whether downhill coast and glide
Soon dusk dons its gleaming medal,
Soon love sings here-comes-the-bride
Whether its chug-chug and puff-puff,
or run-run, like a gazelle
Live, laugh, love and pray, for today
always fades into farewell
Whether past time’s precious prime
or feeling like a super-star
Pray that we learn to cherish life
exactly where we are

© Janet Martin

(Inspired by a little conversation with my sister)

Mysterious Mosaic

Not all beauty is as easily recognizable as that of a flower...

or morning sky...

or precious, innocent child...

We all have our own version of Unspoken Broken, don't we?!
True Beauty in us is impossible until we entrust the pieces into
the loving Hands of the Healer of heart-hurts!

I can do all things through [a]Christ who strengthens me.

True Beauty is not always how we picture it should be
Where brokenness can blind us to beauty’s reality
For what is pleasing to the eye can trick the mind and heart
Into thinking that beauty is a perfect work of art
But beauty is a radiant reflection of ‘Release
When, with our broken pieces, God begins His masterpiece

Beauty starts with the holy heart-work of humility
When at last yielded ‘yes’ replies ‘not I, but Christ in Me’
Then often, tis midst brokenness while shards still pierce and sting
That God can work His best for our good, in everything
For the capstone of beauty is begotten with great price
Not on a bed of roses, but a cross of sacrifice

While disappointment crushes and good intention seems cursed
We learn true beauty’s brushstrokes are not beautiful at first
But, just as God the Father saw beyond The Crucified
Beyond the painful hour to many souls justified
We learn to look beyond the broken to the Hand that heals
We learn that beauty is far more than how one looks or feels

True beauty is in what we know in spite of what we see
The grace whereby our weakness cries ‘not I, but Christ in Me’
As we admit our need; submit, commit our way to His
And undergo a slow and sacred metamorphosis
As glory of The Artist starts to shine through crack and crease
We begin to glimpse designs of Love's Divine Masterpiece

Mysterious mosaic, as God gathers doubts and fears
He melds/mends the broken spirit with confession's tender tears
And fashions from the fragments of our utter selves denied
A Beauty we were blind to while we wallowed in our pride
Mysterious mosaic, as our brokenness is healed
In the light of God's mercy, there, true beauty is revealed
© Janet Martin

I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, 
but Christ lives in me. 
The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, 
who loved me and gave himself for me.

Therefore, I urge you, brothers and sisters,
 in view of God's mercy, to offer your bodies as a living sacrifice, 
holy and pleasing to God--this is your true and proper worship.
Romans 12:1

Sunday, May 30, 2021

Your Faithfulness, Oh Lord, Our God

In some homes/nests (after chatting with a few young moms recently)
 little birdies wake at the crack of dawn
and it isn't long before mummy and/or daddy's wings already feel frayed and frazzled 
and it isn't even 9:00 a.m.! 
In other nests little birdies have grown up and flown the coop/ shelter of parental wings...
and all they can do is look up to He who careth for them 
and ask Him to cover their 'beloved birdies' with the feathers of His wings 
and protect them from a world full of danger and evil, 
some of it so enticingly (and popularly) on display!
The God of the ages is faithful!
The God of Mother Mary is faithful to mothers and fathers
grandparents and great-grandparents the world over
to all who put their trust in Him

Your faithfulness, oh Lord, our God
Is our hope and stay
Where change wields its insistent rod
You do not shift or sway

Your faithfulness, man's very present 
Help in time of need
It eclipses the circumstance
To kindly intercede

Your faithfulness is heaven-high
Your judgments ocean-deep
No fragment of Your truth slips by
That you forget to keep 

Your faithfulness attunes in us
Love's meeker melody
Hope, through heartache, the genesis
Of perfect harmony

Your faithfulness, the Wing that draws
Us where Your Law/love presides
And we can rest secure because
Your faithfulness abides

© Janet Martin

Your mercy, O LORD, is in the heavens; 
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
Psalm 36:5

He will cover you with his feathers, 
and under his wings you will find refuge; 
his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart.
Psalm 91:4

Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, 
and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. 
Are you not much more valuable than they?

Wednesday, May 26, 2021

May Hem (or, is it Heaven's Hem?)

 a glimpse of today's inspiration

It dapples puddles beneath feet
Of laughter innocent and sweet...

It washes shorelines with a song
We have not heard in far too long...

To soak in nature-sculpted nooks
And watch the fisher trawling brooks...

A bolt of fabric, (or, a jolt of magic) flower-spun...

Unrolls beneath the beaming sun
Through bowers burgeoning, bright green
With glints of gold splashed in between...

It washes shorelines with a song
We have not heard in far too long
It decks fruit trees with blossom-show
Then flecks the foliage below
With soundless storms of petal snow

A bolt of fabric, flower-spun
Unrolls beneath the beaming sun
Through bowers burgeoning, bright green
With glints of gold splashed in between
Where long a cold white sash had been

A rush like rivers on the air
Flows through flushed woodland’s lofty flare
While shadow-pools deepen until
There are no shallows left to fill
Beneath the arc where whispers spill

It tickles silver-sparkling streams
Rekindles garden-dinner dreams
Planted in carrots, taters, corn
The heart feels like the world at morn
With vigor, vim and verve reborn

Ancient and stalwart, lilacs frill
The fringes of hollow and hill
They dot the land, like faithful guards
Keeping vigil over graveyards
And feet-forsaken boulevards

Its hemline skims the luring banks
Where people loll in easy thanks
With picnic baskets, blankets, books
To soak in nature-sculpted nooks
And watch the fisher trawling brooks

It dapples puddles beneath feet
Of laughter innocent and sweet
It is a butterfly, a bird
A poem without form or word
A sense of dust that childhood stirred

Is it Heaven or May that trails
Its hemline over rills and vales
To waken bracken, tightly curled
Like fists of green softly unfurled
To weave a winsome wonderworld

© Janet Martin

To waken bracken, tightly curled
Like fists of green softly unfurled...

Tuesday, May 25, 2021

May Medley

Today's somewhat tardy poem muddled its way through
a myriad of chores, errands and such...
(such as just now, chasing washed winter coats that blew off the line
 in this wildly windy, dusty, hot afternoon!
We really need rain!

An early morning
grocery-greenhouse run left me still looking for a few things 
I was unable to get on round one...
Muffins over-baked

 midst food-prep;
Greek salad fixings and veggies for quickie-lunches-to-go

...midst putting supper in the crockpot 

...midst phone calls
trying to find a greenhouse not sold out of stevia!
I found one 😊

The coral dahlia below winked at me in one greenhouse (easing the disappointment) 
while I was told regretfully, they were sold out of stevia.

May is always a busy month but may we never lose focus on what truly matters
 midst the mayhem...

Take time to take pleasure in its quick offerings, like lilacs 

and Solomon's seal...

May we make our May day's count for more than numbers ticked off
on a calendar!

May we seek to count our blessings rather than complain or stare
At life’s holes that gape with questions that shape meekness into prayer

May we not miss The Big Picture, intent on what seems amiss
May we learn to trust the Teacher, knowing life is more than This

May we do what we are able through He who helps and equips
And keeps our footing stable in a hand that never slips

May we vow to make now matter as if God was plain to see
May we try to serve our Master with love and humility

May we sense amidst the muddle of struggle and suffering
Someone greater than the trouble that this world is sure to bring

May we bear each other’s burden rather than dodge Duty’s Call
May we learn to truly love the One who loves us above all

© Janet Martin

1 Cor.10:31
So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do,
do it all for the glory of God.

The song below echoes the message in Ann Voskamp's post today!
If you read this could you pray for Ann?!!
She has been through so much lately!

Monday, May 24, 2021

Because Of What Yet Waits To Be...(Eternity)

Phil Mickelson makes history as he wins the PGA at 50 years old!

Whenever I witness the joy of the winner
in a competition (esp. one that goes against the odds)
 I can't help but think about
the unsurpassed joy of the victory of the believer
when the race is run/victory won and (against all would-be odds) 
we lay hold of the Prize,
possible through the victory of Christ on the cross
when He uttered 'it is finished',
just before He died and paid sin's debt
then rose again because Death is not the victor for all who put
our faith in Christ!
This Hope changes our perspective and objective 
from the temporal to the eternal!

Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it.
But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 
I press on toward the goal to win the prize 
for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
(Phil. for Philippians, not Phil Mickelson😄)

Because what was will be no more
And what will be we cannot see
Where morning flings ajar Time’s door
We ought to step through rev’rently
To meet this measure of God’s grace
To treat it like a treasured prize
Because this wisp of time and place
Is like a spark that upward flies

Because what was is always set
In fathoms of mercy renewed
We ought to meet morn’s gracious ‘yet’
With conscientious gratitude
Where moments gather to become
The sum of sacred reckoning
Who knows when we will be borne from
Time’s tugging tide of beckoning

Because what was none can retrace
And what yet waits we cannot tell
We ought to tread with steadfast faith
This brink between heaven and hell
Where morning like a gleaming sea
Of beauty over brokenness
Washes shores of eternity
In love’s unbridled faithfulness

© Janet Martin

Where morning like a gleaming sea of beauty over brokenness
washes shores of eternity...

Sunday, May 23, 2021

Hooray for May Day!

We smile because God in control, consoles the broken world with blooms...

May makes us glad to feel at home on earth’s green-gilded loam, the trees
Have broken wide bark-cups that spill into a billion melodies
They fill the air and thrill the prayers of we with ears tuned to the chime
Of flower-bells and dandy yellow-lions bobbing perfect time

May is a broom that sweeps out rooms of doom and gloom beneath our skin
It flings ajar the shutters of the heart and lets the sunshine in
Where labour of the hand is sweeter than it was, because the earth
Renewed after the winter, beams with nature’s miracles of birth

May wears a lilac-perfumed breeze and teases bees to bumble-buzz
And guzzle nectar from a chalice dainty as there ever was
We smile because God in control, consoles the broken world with blooms
He satisfies the longing soul with goodness brimming from plumbed plumes

May plays a hymn of hope renewed and happiness in simple things
Like picnics in the fresh-clad woods and concerts from minstrels with wings
Like lying on a dappled quilt beneath the gilt of sun-spun leaf
To laugh while shadows tickle toes and kiss the curves of care and grief

Like orchard-ballrooms filled with ballerinas in blush-pink tutus 
Like puddles of forget-me-nots and tots as they kick off their shoes
May makes us feel like royalty in palaces of grass and sky
May is a happy hip-hooray of spark rekindled in time's eye 

A day in May is like a gem placed in the palm of outstretched hands
It is an orchestra that a perfect and kind Maestro commands
It is God’s touch upon the shoulder of a very needy world
To make us glad to stand upon a banner of Goodness unfurled

© Janet Martin

Psalm 107:8-9 & 21-22 & 31 KJV

Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness,
and for his wonderful works to the children of men!
 For he satisfieth the longing soul, 
and filleth the hungry soul with goodness.

Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, 
for his wonderful works to the children of men!
And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, 
and declare his works with rejoicing.

Oh that men would praise the Lord for his goodness, 
and for his wonderful works to the children of men!

Saturday, May 22, 2021

What a Gift...


This is the day which the Lord hath made; 
we will rejoice and be glad in it.
Psalm 118:24

'What beauty to behold amidst brokenness and decay'

When we plant tomatoes and peppers we expect to reap
tomatoes and peppers; 
We plant word-and-deed seeds, often without thought;
What will the reaping of them produce?!

What delight this; a new day (that the Lord has made) to pour
Its moment-sand through hands and feet until it is no more
What privilege to embark where the darkness lifts its veil
And make the most of this, a gift from He who will not fail

What joy to know no matter what, God goes with me and you
He parts the waters of Unknown so that we may pass through
Trustworthy to the finish is the One who grants the gift
Of buds that break and bloom where soon its withered petals drift

Today is like a garden that we plant with words and deeds
God is not mocked; soon we will reap the fruit of scattered seeds
The fount that yields the harvest field instills beneath our skin
A time to sow and watch it grow; a time to gather in

What delight this; but what sacred responsibility
To labour for the Lord and Master of eternity
The dust of time’s entrustment soon returns from whence it came
Where days of grass blaze on a wick soon snuffed of mortal flame

What beauty to behold amidst brokenness and decay
This day the Lord has made is like a wonder-laden tray
Lowered to we who sometimes cannot see the fulness of
The Hand that overflows with grace, goodness, mercy and love

© Janet Martin

Friday, May 21, 2021

Be With Us, Lord...

This poem kind of composed itself as I prayed this morning,
So much suffering, as many personal situations as there are people!! 
and one true God on whom all may call.

Be with us Lord, for we all have a daily cross to bear
Be with the elderly; with those cared for and those who care
Be with the mother in her home with tots to test and try
The parts of hearts that need more than mere mortal can supply

Be with us Lord, the young striving to keep their passions pure
Convict and guide and chasten pride, the bait of satan’s lure
Be with the child who teaches us how to be mild and meek
Help us be swift to hear and slow to anger or to speak

Be with those who are suffering abed, and those bedside
Comfort the broken-hearted with hope only You provide
Be with the lonely, longing-tossed, the lost you came to save
Be with the needy poor and needy rich who crave and crave

Be with our loved ones far and near; let Your kind presence fill
The holes that gape with waiting and the hunger of 'until'
Be with us so that we may treat our fellowman with love
And meet impending circumstance with power You will prove

Be with the head of countries, corporations, churches, homes
Be with the barge who bears the charge of yet unwritten poems
Lord, lead, guide and direct, where we are often unaware
Of how you intercede, protect and keep us in Your care

Be with all who are quarantined; the healthy and the sick
Be with those blind to time and how it cuts souls to the quick
Help us to learn to lean upon Your grace, faithful and true
To find the perfect peace you grant to the mind stayed on You

Be with each one of us, instill the powerhouse of Thought
Help us to trust rather than understand what we cannot
As we embark from where we are, on miles still held at bay
Be with us Lord, and help us with the cross we bear today

In Your precious Name we pray,

© Janet Martin

You will keep him in perfect peace, 
Whose mind is stayed on You, 
Because he trusts in You.

Thank God!

a few May morning creation-treasures...

Thank God for beauty of creation, nature’s free-for-all
Where no one can claim credit for His creatures great and small
Mankind beholds what earth unfolds; we cannot intervene
To haste a bud to bloom or baste the countryside in green
We owe the crowning glory of worship’s unbridled praise
To He who orchestrates and grants the number of man’s days

Thank God for beauty beyond reach of evil’s ruthless rod
The heavens timelessly declare the handiwork of God
To set before our gaze, buffets laden with trays designed
By clouds and colours man cannot muster or mastermind
Then praise God, who furnishes seed, bud and celestial fount
Before the day when we bow down to give sacred account

Thank God for seasons we can only skim the surface of
To marvel without merit at earth’s laden treasure trove
To be the sole recipients of joy as we behold
The wonders of creation that somehow never grow old
Unbridled beauty clothes this globe compelling awestruck gaze
To touch the hemline of His robe with reverence and praise

Thank God, that while the ages roll creation keeps its youth
Where time will always take its toll yet cannot alter truth
Or usurp the Creator; from the dawn of ‘let there be
No one and nothing can deter divine authority
He cups creation in His Hands, commands sun, moon and stars
We smote our chests, cry ‘what is man’ and drink from Mercy’s scars/jars

Thank God that He charges no fee for wonderment’s surprise
But spreads showcases lavishly before our very eyes
Where nature remains innocent in spite of mortal guilt
A kind of picnic basket emptied on earth’s tartan quilt
Where we are all invited to partake of beauty’s fare
And give God all the glory for glory He chose to share

© Janet Martin

Psalm 104:33-34

I will sing to the Lord all my life;
I will sing praise to my God as long as I live.
May my meditation be pleasing to him,
as I rejoice in the Lord.

Thursday, May 20, 2021

Oh Lord, Please Send an Angel Army (to minister to moms)


Sometimes home-sweet-home feels more like a battleground
where soul-diers in training can put up quite a fight
and test the best of any mom's/dad's fortitude!
Dear mother, daddy, do not despair! 
This little charge is worth every hard correction and prayer

Tots depend on mom and dad to do what no one else will;
 train them as they grow!
 It's not easy but it is the most important challenge
you will ever undertake!

 before time tips them out of childhood's 'wheelbarrow'...

Oh Lord, please send an angel down to minister to moms (and daddies)
In the thick of a battle with most crucial outcomes
Grant them wisdom and patience as they plant and prune and cull
Without the advantage of an instruction manual

Oh Lord, please send an angel down to minister to moms
Theirs is no undertaking of love, soon over-and-done
A mother’s love, a balance of both tough and tender, oh
As they train up a child in the way that they ought to go

Oh Lord, please send an angel down to minister to moms
For they grow weary as they discipline daughters and sons
It isn’t easy working for precious Child’s greater good
Lord, send an angel army to minister to motherhood (parenthood)

© Janet Martin

Train up a child in the way he should go,
And when he is old he will not depart from it.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
 in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight