Words burn within me

To tell all the others

The beauty I saw today.

The mountain’s high crest

The forest’s red haze

The foam of the river’s spray


A piercing of light

A wind tossed swallow

The mist of a mountain’s shroud

The boldness of color

The caress of a breeze

The wisps of a wind scattered cloud


But the deepest things

That are caught in my soul

In muted aching cry

Are the flash of a smile

The gleam of teeth

The light in a villager’s eye


A faint shy smile

A word exchanged

And laughter quick and keen

These are the treasures

That I long to share

From all that today I have seen.


Originally written in February of 2017, this poem came to mind after my day today.


God Hunt

I am on a God hunt.

I grab my friend’s camera, and set out on my bike, impatient, thirsty, and expectant. The western sky hangs heavy with soot red smoke and the dust stings my eyes as I drive first down the winding path behind our house, where suddenly the road pops out into a gap where a rice field lies, green and spring-like in the dying evening.

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Then I drive on, through choking Friday evening traffic, and wait at stoplights that are stonily unsympathetic to hunters who know the sun is steadily dying in the west. I watch the people around me and wonder if any of them are on a God hunt. Finally, I find it, a pocket of green field with a smoky view of the mountain and the silhouette of a church cross painted on the sky.

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I breath in deeply the greenness and savor the glimpses of the setting sun. We leave with whetted appetites and wander on and on, down twisting alleys and darkening streets, seeking for more. I find it where cows graze on withered grass in the dusky evening, and two dogs bark menacingly at the strange foreigner pointing a black thing towards their charges.

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They escort me out the alley at a furious pace, satisfied that they have succeeded in disposing of me.

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I find a place, where the country and city meet, where the light from the street lights gleams over the rice fields and calls me home.

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Soon it is too dark to snap anymore photos, which is good since I am thoroughly lost and need to focus on finding my way. Finally, I pop out on a large road close to a major university, about 15 kilometers from home. I make my way home, turning in the last road where the cool air nestles in a pocket of trees, and reach our gate, where our dog greets me.

IMG_5639 My eyes are dry and burnt by smog, my back is tired from driving, but I have found beauty, and where beauty is, God’s hand has been.

Beauty is God’s poetry.


Almost three years ago, I posted this story. Recently, because of some research I’ve been doing at school, it came to mind again, so I’m reblogging it. Share on, and pray.


rumpelstiltskin-story-1Many of us know the story of Rumpelstiltskin and of the girl who was taken by the king and forced to spin straw into gold. It has a happy ending. But what we don’t know is that the story of the princess and Rumpelstiltskin is still lived out in thousands of places in the modern world. Here is a retelling of the story.

Once upon a time, in a faraway kingdom where jungles grew thick and green in the hills, and mountain-fed streams roamed wild and bold down rocky slopes where elephants and tigers ran free, there lived a girl whose name was Ruthai.

Ruthai lived with her family in the mountain villages, and she was more beautiful than the full moon on a midsummer night, or the brilliant splash of waves on rocks in the midday sun. Her raven tresses fell thick and long to her waist, and her eyes…

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The Image of You


The following poem was previously

published for the first time in Vibrant Girl Volume 3 Issue 1


I have wandered among windswept hills

Almost to where the sky touched me

I have danced in prairies, gold and green

Where wheat waves run like amber sea

I have roamed the lonesome mountain ridges

I have watched a hundred morns unfold

And flung my soul in breathless praise

At sight of sunset’s tawny gold


But not only beauty draws my heart

To sing about your glory–

Dark eyes aglow in unfeigned joy,

The trembling words of soul-saved story,

Healing tears in a Godspun moment

Quiet knowing, laughter light

A dream of joy, a hunger shared,

Breaking of walls, giving of sight


Oh, yes, I have praised you in the windswept hills

Under a sky of brilliant blue

Yet my heart sings too in a soul -filled life

In a smile, a tear, an image of You 

Hunger 2

I am missing something tonight

Something as deep as the sea

But ask me what I miss and I

Cannot say what it may be


It’s a fitfulness inside of me

That even songs could not heal

And my ramble out beneath the stars

This unknown ache could not steal


Maybe this girl inside of me

Knows, yet she will not show

But seriously, if I must cry

Tell me why! Let me know!


Silence at midnight

When the world is asleep

Except for the geckos, my dog and I,

And the lone plane in the distant black sky.

Fingers reach, stealthily into the box,

Half ashamed, then again, not ashamed.

The telltale rattle, the swift pouring;

I sit. And he sits, beside me, brown, intense and awake

In the sleeping darkness;

Brown ears cocked, eyes trained,

Tail thumping methodically.

We eat together, I from my bowl, and he

The spoonfuls I throw at him.

We share the meal, and the togetherness and aliveness

In an unconscious world.

He does not know the meaning

Of qualitative research and causation and correlation

And grounded theory and phenomenology.

But this he understands.

And oh, yes, so do I.

So do I.


photo credit: pixabay.com

Rainbow Desires

As I was looking across some poetry I had filed away, I came across this poem, written about 3 years ago (3 years already?!). I was reminded again at how much things I have written in the past often mean more to me later than when I wrote them. I needed this tonight.


Like rainbow colored playdough in childish hands

Are all our deep desires

Sent from the Father of lights, Father of all

Kindler of all dream fires


Left on our own, we shape our dreams

And in our desires delight

Not knowing that what we have done is done

Through unskilled blinded sight


We mold and shape with fumbling hands desires

What we think our destiny

Till our Father in love reaches down and whispers

“Child, child, give it to me.”


But no, I wail, I cannot; it must be mine, mine!

These desires belong to me

My Father’s hands are inexperienced; he cannot know

How I want it all to be!


What if my Father drops my dreams?

What I he waits too long?

What if the colors lose their hue?

And life its rainbow song?


Through a rain of tears I look down in my hands

At the feeble dreams I’ve made

And wonder who could better- Creator or created?

Bring glory from rainbow shades?


“Delight thyself in the Lord and He will give thee the desires of thine heart.”

Still a Child

Little baby girl, in the dark night

Deep dark night without any light

Fear of the blackness creeps on the wall

Fear of the night closes in like a shawl


The boundless outside, beyond her small world

Presses deep  on her as she lies curled

Helpless she stares, pulled taut at Fear’s touch

The shadows on the wall are too much, too much.


She cries and the sound is harsh in the night

She whimpers in the darkness, longing for sight

Then, coming through the darkness is her mother at last

Warm, pulsing presence, understanding what has passed


Gulping down sobs, she rests with a sigh

Listening, oh listening, to the sweet lullaby


“O Jesus liebt mich

O Jesus liebt mich

O Jesus liebt mich

Die Bibel sagt mir so” *


Little baby girl grows up over years

Still scared of the shadows, fighting her fears

Scared of the darkness, the anguish it bears

Hard down upon her and the pain that she shares


She cries and the sound is harsh in the night

She whimpers in the darkness, longing for sight

Then coming through the night is her Jesus at last

Warm, pulsing presence, understanding what has passed


Gulping down sobs, she rests with a sigh

Listening, oh listening, to the sweet lullaby


“O Jesus liebt mich

O Jesus liebt mich

O Jesus liebt mich

Die Bibel sagt mir so.”


*”Yes, Jesus loves me

Yes, Jesus loves me

Yes, Jesus loves me

The Bible tells me so.”


-October 2012


14 Ways…

to know you’ve been living in Thailand for an extended period of time and are home on break. When….

  1. You enter a new bathroom, and you feel around on the outside of the bathroom door for the light switch, forgetting that in America they put light switches inside bathrooms.
  2. You stand in line while going through immigrations at the airport and munch chocolate, then feel bad for not sharing it with the person beside you. But you don’t want to share it because they would think you are weird.
  3. You cringe when people use their foot to motion or perform a task.
  4. You find yourself staring at dark haired people on the street, wondering if by any chance they might be Thai.
  5. You drink water out of the sink, simply enjoying the novelty of doing that again.
  6. You motion people to come with your palm down, and then feel really weird for doing it.
  7. You find yourself sitting on the floor more than on chairs, because it really is more comfortable.
  8. Just opening the fridge and looking into it is an adventure and feast for the eyes.
  9. You feel like a shadow of your old self, coming back to old haunts and realize that the haunts changed. People are fatter, thinner, older, more stooped, happier, sadder…
  10. You can sit down at the table to eat and not have to swat at mosquitoes.
  11. You feel funny when you think about the fact that you can speak another language. Like you just made up that language and no one else knows it. Or that you have some secret power inside of you that really is of no use.
  12. You realize that you actually do like Americans.
  13. You realize that since you live far away, you have become a neutral, “safe” person to others. People tell you things they never would have years ago.
  14. And you can pull off your clothes in one fell swoop instead of having to peel them off in a sweaty, sticky mess.