Tag Archives: Faith

HOW I LOST MY FAITH – In Preachers

It was a cold and muddy Sunday
Our little caravan of Christians
children, parents and student minister
stuck in the spring mud a mile from church

Me and city cousin Wayne
the chosen ones at age seven
chosen to walk
to the nearest neighbour
while the others wait in the cars

The neighbor’s not home
but his Cockshutt 40 tractor is

Some combination of farm boy bravado
and reluctance to slog
back to the cars in defeat
comes out as “I can drive a tractor!”

One foot each on the clutch
and a good deal of grinding
gets us into low gear
and off at about two miles per

The student minister meets us
two thirds of the way back

As our leader
in all things spiritual
and practical
he decrees that we are going
far too slow
and selects another gear
(probably at random, he’s from the city too)

The one he picks is the fastest
known in these parts as “Road Gear”
and we quickly accelerate to thirty

which causes the preacher to panic
(or remember that he forgot his bible)
and leap off

leaving us to wrestle the big red monster
now wildly careening from rut to rut
and rocketing toward the mired cars
and fearful families

Wrenching the wheel to the right
at the last possible moment
we narrowly avoid death and destruction
and stall to a stop in the water-filled ditch
amidst the prayers of the congregation



The people of New Orleans are still singing

If religion is indeed the opiate of the people
seldom was it more needed and more used
than last September down in New Orleans

And yet strangely and much I suspect
to the relief of the administration
the God of the people of New Orleans
is not a God of revenge

The God of the people of New Orleans
is a God of mysterious intent
not blamed for those who die
but praised by those who live

Theirs is the God that rocks you to sleep
in the belly of the slave ship
surrounded by water

The God that rocks you to sleep
in the hold of the Superdome
surrounded by water



As we look around the world today we see
with God as our father in trouble all are we

Fathers as you know, often have a tendency
towards discipline, judgement and wrath
while grandparents almost always
take a wiser, gentler path

There may be much to learn
as we choose, or create our deity
from the Blackfoot, Sioux and Cree
who still gather at Grandfather’s knee

APRIL 2ND 2005

APRIL 2ND 2005

The pope died today
I heard about it on the radio
on the way to the Bahai reading

The pope died today and the pope was a poet
I know because I have one of his books

Anyway, the pope died today
and the pope was a poet

He was a good and a wise man too
who apologized to the Gypsy and the Jew

But I know he would
because the pope was a poet

And he was working yet
to get the big banks to forgive
the third world’s crippling debt

But that was no surprise
because the pope was a poet

And now as cardinals
in solemn gaggles gather
to spread portfolios for a look

I hope they look for a poetry book