The Father With OCD, to His Son


This world I see,
A bomb, a trap, a snare;
One false move is death;
No maps –

This world I see
Is not
The world that is
Appointed me to show you.

By faith I understand,
Under the grime and soot of it,
Creation good spills upward;
The cup overflows
The Beloved unloosed;
The bondage of sin and its gear
Graced away,
Unspooled, inspired,
The putty of God.

This is where skeins of you
Curious, point,
When you ask,
When you play,
When nobody warns you the world is mire:
Not mine to teach
The lessons of loss
That will feel with fire your joints;
The fish in the blender-wind
Needs no parsing parent for spelling his pain.

If there is accomplishment,
It will not be in preparing you for the harshness of life,
But for strength to remember the childlike faith, on this side and that:
Be you ever nostalgic
For future –
What was ever will be and is –
Hardest to hear past alarms in my head.

My sermon is this: taking time in apocalypse
to share with you crackers and cheese
and play silly games.

For God, who sees the sparrow fall,
Has given you greater joy:
To see it fly;
And grace a millstone about my neck,
Though anxiety drowned in a sea of love,
Tastes ever like death,
My palate unused to joy
Unsavoured save by faith.


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