Monday, May 31, 2004

Writing Empty like an Open Hand, Pt III

David Kopp, “Writing Empty Like and Open Hand.” Part III
Plenary address given at Just Write, writers conference at Biola University, July 28-31, 1991

(3) We write empty like an open hand to live the story of redemption. This is the story of the chameleon. The chameleon is God’s joke. The chameleon is a disaster. The chameleon proves to us that God has a very Jewish sense of humor. The African chameleon is slow, dull, often invisible, and boring. The chameleon makes a great pet for boys because girls are scared of chameleons. At my school, most of the boys had chameleons in their pockets. My chameleon was so boring I never named him.

His body is a wreck. He has very spindly legs. His toes are splayed. He has this really ugly head with eyeballs that bulge out. On the very ends of the eyeballs are these little tiny eyes and they have little eyelids and they are blinking. And God made them so their eyeballs could go different directions. The only reason God did that is so the chameleon could live in a state of constant anxiety. Because he can see all the trouble coming his way, but he knows he can’t outrun it. He lives in a state of great terror.

The chameleon, in African folklore, has always wanted to be a lion. The chameleon wants to roar. The chameleon is also unable to make any sound. One day the snake comes to the chameleon and says,

“God made you small so that you would not terrify the mountains and they would fall on us. And you would terrify the lion and he would eat us. God made you small.”

Well, if you can imagine a chameleon the size of a lion turning bright colors. When they get angry, their neck frills bulge out and they’re orange striped and they turn black, and their ear flaps come up. Can you imagine an animal the size of a lion doing that?

The chameleon learns to live with his problem, which is ugliness. And out of that comes another saying that goes like this:

“If your face is ugly, learn to sing.”

The chameleon is the singer and the storyteller in the animal kingdom in many African tribes. This is what’s neat about it, this is my point: the chameleon tells everyone else’s story. And when he’s doing that, he weaves meanings for them.

He weaves meanings. He tells them what’s significant about their lives. He sings their life to them. He sings meaning into their life. I think as writers that’s what we do. We become, we are part of a process that speaks meaning into other people’s lives. Not from a distance. We are intertwined with their lives. And we speak meaning to them. We name. Our gift is words. We name things. We name feelings. That’s when someone reads what you write and says, “Yeah, that’s what it feels like.” There’s a recognition going on because your gift into their life is to put words to something, to name something.

It’s like when Nathan came to David and said, “You’ve named this baby Solomon. But God has a name for this child, it’s Jeddediah: Loved of God.”

What an incredible picture of grace that God would send a man to David and say, “I have a name for your son that has come out of all this tragedy and foolishness in your life. And his name is Loved By Me.”

We do that for our readers. We name things—name truths, they don’t have words for. They don’t have words for. This is our gift to them. I think it is also our gift to God. God needs our words.

A japanese theologian said it this way, his name is Kazo Kitumori:

“The heart of the gospel is the pain of God.”

He is writing about Jeremiah. You know, God needed Jeremiah. God needed Jeremiah to wail. Because God felt grief. God felt incredible pain. God felt anger. God felt despair. And he picked Jeremiah his prophet to say those words, not just to say them, to feel them, to live them before his people. And if you read the book of Lamentations, Jeremiah starts out saying, “This is how God feels.” At the beginning of chapter three, Jeremiah says, “This is how Jeremiah feels.” It’s all mixed up. It’s all one thing. Jeremiah is living out the story of redemption to his people. Jeremeiah is letting those people know when Jerusalem is falling all around them, that God is in deep grief with them. What he has given them is the gift of words. God words through him.

God needs our words. He needs them to speak himself into our generation. It is something we can give God. We find meanings for our readers. We incarnate the gospel to them. In this process something wonderful happens, this is the story of redemption. We, as writers, we’re changed. We meet God. The place to meet God in the Old Testament, a wonderful place, is in the prophets. Have you ever read Isaiah, is it, chapter six?

“I saw the Lord high and lifted up.”

And we as His ministers, we’re Word ministers. We meet God. He comes to us in our place of desolation, our place of need. It’s like the last verse in Psalm 30:

“He himself will redeem Israel.”

I love that, whatever that is grammatically. Rex will have to help you out. You know that repetition. What’s the word for that? Reflexive pronoun. Yes, He himself. The emphasis is on God, not what He is going to do, but God’s presence will redeem us. And that is the gift to us. As we are open before God and receptive to Him, God’s presence comes to us.

There is something else that’s wonderful. We are unable to be bearers of the Gospel without being changed ourselves. It doesn’t work. Do you know that God has no plan for His message in your life apart from you the messenger. I don’t believe it. God will change you. If you give yourself to Him, to be a carrier of His words to people. To express God in this age, God will change you. God will work in you, God will bring healing to you. I’ve seen it in my own life. We cannot be carriers of grace without being wet with grace. Without being rich with the gospel. We cannot set other people free, with the message of the gospel, without ourselves being set free.

It doesn’t happen as quickly as we’d like. God is LATE. God, he’s late. He’s always late. Too late for my schedule. But in that need, that longing that many of us live with for many years. How many years I’ve cried out to God in my journals, Lord I just want to be healed. I want to be healed. I need to be healed. Please come to me. And you’ve read that so many times in the Psalms, where we seek after God this is our natural state. We seek after God. But as we carry God’s word to His people, as we stand before Him with our whole hearts, with open hands, something wonderful happens. We’re changed. We are healed. We are set free. In our darkness, God’s light shines.

Let’s pray: Lord, I thank you for this opportunity to stand before these dear people and be honest with them about the things in my life that have been hard, that have even been impossible. That I’ve given to you. And Lord, I am privlidged to stand here and pray for them, and on their behalf. I pray for those in this group that feel empty before you and that yet feel you are asking them to speak. Lord, into that need and that want, that they are holding out faithfully to you everyday, I pray dear God, that you would put something precious. I pray that you would fill them with every good thing. With kingdom things, not with the stuff of this earth. And for Lord, Lord, for those in this group that are full of many things that are good, that aren’t the best, that aren’t your destiny for them, I pray Lord that they would submit to you as you peel their fingers off of these things. That they could let go of what is not their destiny before you and be willing to be open handed before you and to wait for you to come. And Lord for those who are already in ministry for you, who are conduits of your grace, of your power, of your message of life to this world, Lord bless them. Make them prophets in your Kingdom. Lord we labor with you to bring something new into this generation. We willingly labor with you God to bring something new, to speak your words. To speak life, to speak healing, and Lord we need Your blessing andYour power upon our ministry otherwise our words are small things that change nothing. But with Your presence, our words are hammers that break the rocks and they are powerful, and they are fire, and they are from You. Amen.

May these passages from David Kopp affect your life as they have affected mine. May they challenge you and inspire you. May they be life unto you. Blessings!

Sunday, May 30, 2004

Writing Empty like an Open Hand, Pt II

David Kopp, “Writing Empty Like and Open Hand,” Pt II
Plenary address given at Just Write, writers conference at Biola University, July 28-31, 1991

(2) We are empty before God because we want to receive something precious that others miss. This is the story of the snake. It is really just a folk saying, it goes like this:

“The snake is the wisest of all creatures because it touches the earth completely.”

I think once we are empty before God we are then, candidates to receive something precious. Something that others miss. We are available then to live deeply. Experience deeply. Out of that encounter, out of that receptivity comes something precious. I think for us as writers, that’s where creativity occurs. Creativity defined as, the “intensively conscious encounter of a person with his or her world.”

Now we as Christians have the truth all lined up. I don’t know if we are really ready for encounter. Do you know what I mean? In some ways we use the truth so we don’t have to encounter. We don’t have to even encounter God. Because hey, we’ve got him down to seven points. Why struggle in the darkness with God? Why wrestle with God? Why say to God,

“I won’t let you go until you bless me.”

We’ve got him in a book. Chuck Swindoll wrote it. You wrote it. It’s a good book. It sold thousands. We hardly need God. I’m not saying anything bad about your book, about Chuck’s book. Do you hear what I am saying? We can very easily use what is good in our lives as a barrier to God. To keep him at arm’s length. To keep him in control. To use him.

When we are empty like an open hand to receive, this is what I call a tenacious receptivity. It is courage. We hold out our hand to God and say:

“God fill it. Fill it with the truth. Fill it with something new. I’m here. I’m listening.”

A chinese poet says:

“We poets struggle with non-being to force it into being. We knock upon silence for an answer in music.”

I think we should pursue God that hard. I think we should listen to God that intently. To receive. To hear what he is saying. What is it? What is it? If you’re anything like me you spend a lot of your time pacing around in your study huffing and puffing, listening. What is it? What is it? What is it? God, What is it? I’m here. I’m here.

God has made us to be questers. People have told me amazing things they do for fun. It’s what drove the scientists like James Watson, at twenty-five, to go on despite discouragement from other chemists to discover the double helix architecture of the DNA molecule. One of the greatest discoveries of our century. It’s the chemical alphabet of life. He was twenty-five. People said it couldn’t be done. He went on. He was a creative scientist at work.

The quest is what drove a thirteen-year-old boy to ask one of the most important questions that has been asked in this century.

“What would the world look like if I were riding a beam of light?”

Do you know who that was? You can probably guess. His name was Albert Einstein. That led on to his theory of relativity: In-laws.

God has made us to seek Him. God pursues us. We pursue God. That’s the way it’s meant to be. The most important thing a writer learns in a school of journalism in my opinion is not what makes a good lead, not what grammar is, not how to get a job as a reporter. It’s an attitude. It is an attitude that you go toward the conflict, not away. You go toward what you don’t know, not away. You go toward the best source, not the easy source. You go toward what is news.

So many of us retreat from those difficult things, they challenge us. That is what will enable us to give readers something that they can’t get on their own. Out of this receptivity then comes creativity. In my case, out of this receptivity God dealt with me in the issue of trust, in my life. I didn’t trust God. Trust is the hardest thing for me to do.

A snippet of my life, starting at five years old, I was sent off to boarding school. At the boarding school, a missionary boarding school, was a headmaster, who had a violent temper. He was a big man, he’d been an athlete at Wheaton College. He was not in control of his temper. He beat us with the fan belt from a car. I don’t say that to make you wince. Here’s the problem, Mr. Hess would stand up the next morning and read from Daily Light.

Now perhaps you can understand how that twisted my idea of a trustworthy God. Because the only reason I could figure out that I was at a missionary boarding school was that my mom and my dad were following him, God, with all their hearts. Where was God? When Mr. Hess was, making me bleed. Then standing up as God’s man in my life. So God brought me to this place of emptiness to receive a very basic thing, we can’t go on without in life. I would have never wanted to learn trust. I wouldn’t have wanted to deal with it. But God brought me to this place, because He wanted to give me something better than that chicken bone.

Saturday, May 29, 2004

Writing Empty like an Open Hand, Pt I

I was only going to share this with Life Sentence, my critique group, but I realized as I was transcribing it, this is powerful stuff. I had forgotten how much of my theology, my view of the Christian publishing industry, my life view was formed by this one “little” speech given by David Kopp so many years ago. It is the only tape I have pulled out over the years and listened to repeatedly. It is also a challenge to those of us, be we writers, artists, whatnot when given the opportunity to speak, speak truth. Speak for God. Your topic can be more than just the subject matter, whatever it happens to be, it can change lives as this speech has for me. I used (or tried) proper caps for your reading ease and since these are David Kopp’s words and not my own. Be blessed. (This is only the first installment, two more to come over the next few days).

David Kopp, “Writing Empty Like and Open Hand.”
Plenary address given at Just Write, writers conference at Biola University, July 28-31, 1991

Introduction of Speaker by Susan Titus Osborn.
It is my pleasure this morning to introduce to you the keynote speaker, who has become one of my dear friends. He is the editor of Christian Parenting Today magazine. He directed the school of Journalism at Multnomah School of the Bible for eight years. He has been actively involved in Christian writing and writers programs since 1978. I really feel, this is obviously not on his bio, but I obviously feel he started with a magazine that was brand new not very many years ago, and he has turned it into one of the most credible and one of the largest Christian magazines in the nation. I introduce to you, David Kopp.

The title of my address is, “Writing Empty like an Open Hand.” This is a topic, which kind of picked me. It picked me before I knew what I was supposed to say about it. I don’t know if you’ve ever had that experience. I always liked reading the stories of John Cheever and he used to say many of his best short stories started with the last line. This is a topic title I have been living into for a number of months since Susan first said okay on the phone. That was a great act of courage on her part. Because I had no idea what I wanted to say about it. It was something that seemed true about my life; it was the title of my journal at the time. As I thought about it, I came up with this description:

“Sometimes what we bring to our greatest writing opportunities is mostly weakness and longing. I have noticed that what’s called for at these moments is the courage not to turn away, but to remain. To practice a tenacious receptivity that feels like emptiness. At these moments I believe God is smiling with great anticipation.”

Does that sound pretty weird? It’s really a testimony of my life and my recent experience. Just being here to stand before you and say those things is important for me, part of my life, and my journey. I’m praying that what I say to you will be used in your journey perhaps you’ve experienced a time of emptiness, a time of feeling that God is asking you to speak, and you have nothing to say. I’m not talking about writer’s block. I’m not talking about procrastination. I’m not talking about this being an excuse for not being serious about your writer’s craft, about marketing, about any of those things. It seems to me that in my life, God has brought me to a place of complete bankruptcy before him and then he has said to me, just write.

Just a few facts about my experience, I don’t want to dwell on my own story. The details of it too much, just a few facts. At the very time I was coming to help start Christian Parenting magazine, three years ago my marriage was disintegrating very much against my wishes and my prayers. Since then, I have been the editor of a parenting magazine without a wife, without kids in my home. This has seemed often to me to be a cruel joke of God to me. How can God allow this? How can God ask me every two months to write a column about family? God has put his finger on the sorest part of my life and said, just write. Are you with me?

Perhaps you’ve had this experience. It’s my prayer that in just the few minutes we have that I can say something to you that will encourage you, because what I bring to you is not a story of despair, it’s a story of redemption in my life. I have a very simple outline. It’s three points. My dad was a preacher. What writing empty like an open hand means to me: (1) is to let go, and letting go is the story of the monkey. I should have told you I was born in Africa. (2) and the second point is that we are called to receive something precious others miss and this is the story of the snake. For you visual folks we have to put in really concrete things. (3) and the third point is writing empty like an open hand is to live the story of redemption, to incarnate the story of redemption, and this is the story of the chameleon. Okay, that’s where I am going.

(1) If I were to start a support group for me, Dave Kopp, our slogan would be like this. I would stand up before you and say, “my name is David Kopp and I’m a recovering grasper.” I used to watch African boys catch monkeys, when I was growing up. Catching monkeys is the easiest thing in the world. Monkeys are fast. Monkeys are smart. But they have a weakness, which I recognize. An african boy will take a gourd, a calabasa melon, dry it, hollow it out, put a little hole in the gourd, just large enough for a monkey to reach through with his fist, with his hand. Then the African boy will take this gourd and tie a string to it, a rope of bark, and tie it to the base of a tree and inside the melon the African boy will put something the monkey wants. You know a chicken bone, piece of fruit. Then just walk off a ways and sit and watch. Pretty soon, monkeys are curious. Aggressive. And the monkeys would come down.

Look at this neat little melon. It has a neat little hole in it. Has a neat little string going off to the neat little tree, wow. It’s just for me. Wow, there’s something in there, for me, it’s mine. The monkey is shaking it and looking in the hole. Wow, there’s something inside, and it’s just for me. It’s mine.. So the monkey reaches in with his hand and grasps the little piece of food in there, but he can’t get it out. Huh that’s weird. He can’t get it out.

Right then is when the African boy walks up, and catches the monkey. It’s a very sorry sight. The monkey is screaming, it’s terrible when a monkey screams, awful noise. It’s in agony. Tragedy has come upon it—but it won’t let go of the chicken bone. The monkey is caught.

That’s me. Perhaps it’s you. We have the hardest time of letting go of certain things in our lives. God pursues us to a place of poverty, and sometimes he literally peels our fingers away. He literally peels your finger off the very thing that you want the most. The very thing you think is indispensable to you as a person. To your happiness. To your ministry. He peels it away because you won’t let go. Until you let go, he can’t put anything else in your hand.

There were graspers in scripture. I would call them graspers. Peter was a grasper. He wanted to be in control, he had a plan. Jesus was going to make him a rich fisherman. Then Jesus changed his mind, so Peter changed his mind. Then Jesus was going to make him famous and powerful in Israel and chase those dirty Romans out, and Jesus blew that one too. Finally, Peter gave up. He turned and left, he left the scene. Because Jesus didn’t live up to Peter’s expectations.

Martha was a grasper. She was a busy body, maybe a kind of a controlling person. She was Jewish, I don’t know, maybe somebody’s Jewish mother. She was very energetic, very busy, had a plan and was going for it. And Jesus was always LATE. Jesus was always late for Martha. He was always inconveniencing her life. In fact, he brought great pain in her life because Jesus was late when her brother was dying. And Martha knew Jesus could heal Lazarus. Lazarus didn’t have to die. But Jesus was late, Jesus did not show up on time. And Martha had to let go. Martha had to let go of Lazarus. When she comes to Jesus in that scene in John 11, Jesus asks her some very gentle and pointed questions: Do you believe in me?

Martha says, “Yes I do but…”

Jesus says, “Your brother is alive.”

Martha says, “Yes, he is alive in the resurrection but…”

Jesus pursues that relationship and goes back. Weeps with Martha in her pain and raises Lazarus from the dead. Gives back something more to Martha. Something more than she had. An understanding of God and God’s glory. That is what Jesus said Lazarus died for:

“I need to be glorified in this.”

And he has a wonderful conversation with Peter too doesn’t he? After the resurrection he came to peter on the shore, he asks Peter those wonderful questions: Do you love me? Do you love me? Do you love me? Didn’t he know the answer to those questions? Yes he did. But he was there to give back to Peter something more than Peter had, something more than a successful fisherman, something more than a powerful place in a new Israel. He gave Peter his destiny. If you want to see Peter’s destiny shine forth, read Peter’s letters. Here is a man who has learned to let go and learned to celebrate God in his life.

I think that we have a tough time letting go of things that are good. They are good things. They are answers. They are solutions. They are expectations. Sometimes we, have to let go of God being predictable for us. God being usable to us. God doesn’t always want to be useable to us. He doesn’t always want to be out little power card we can play. And he asks us to let go of those things too. He asks us to let go of our self. He asks us to let go of our expectations of others. Of our security. And he asks us, he drives us, he pursues us, I think, to a place of poverty. What happens then is that he prepares us to, probably to die in a certain way, to let go and to be ready to be reborn.

In the desert, where this is the image, I would use for letting go, we learn certain really important things about life. I have in my life. I’ve learned that waiting is hard work. It is not a passive state. It is hard work. I’ve learned that silence takes courage. Silence before God. Not requiring God to live up to my expectations. I’ve learned that there is a paradox in my generation, that is that, we have a hunger for God, a deep hunger in my generation for God, but we are unable to make a spaciousness in our lives for him. We have so many things to put there. We can’t live with that need. We don’t have to. We have so many good things to put there. And yet, we go away hungry.

I think I’ve learned that hungering and thirsting after God is the natural state of God’s people.

St. Augustine said, “even after God is found, he must be sought.”

Now isn’t that kind of a paradox. This requires that we willingly live with a certain tension in our life. That we willingly say, I will hunger and thirst after you, I will not put anything else in place of that desire for you. I will live with that openness and emptiness before you. I have learned that God can’t compete with certain things in my life. God has a hard time competing with money. Even Jesus admitted that. You can’t serve both, you have to choose. He was saying,

“I willingly go down to defeat in certain things in your life. You have to choose then to give them up to make space for me.”

Those are often good things, but God wills not to be able to compete with those things in our life.

I have learned that there is a certain beauty in poverty before God. I come from a family of ministers, missionaries. We’ve got more preachers in my family than we’ve got Tupperware. For me to come to a place of emptiness was very hard on my pride as well as being hard on my heart. And yet I think that God pursues us to the place where we are poverty stricken before Him. He has something better to give us than our own riches. He has something better than that good thing. It’s a chicken bone, but we think we can’t live without it. He has something better to give us.

Before I left home some good friends and sisters gave me this little book. Pretty little. It’s pretty well the whole script for what I have to say this morning, I should probably just let you all read it and we can go home. It’s like this, see. I’ll read it to you:

“Be still with your hands open, like one who has nothing to give but the beauty of his own poverty. This is where God waits.”

That’s a hard place to be for a creative person. It’s a hard place for a young ambitious person, for a proud person, maybe for all of us to be. To wait in that place with nothing before God.

A real quick aside, I went to the Christian Booksellers Association (CBA) in Orlando. Have any of you been to the CBA? It’s been here in Anaheim a couple of times. That’s an overwhelming experience. I’ll try not to sound cynical, because none of my books were on sale there, because I haven’t written any. It’s possible that there’s jealousy here I’m willing to confess. It’s an amazing experience to stand in the Orlando convention center, it’s the size of probably two football fields, it looked that way to me, crammed full of Christian stuff. This is where you are all headed right? This is Mecca? You better take your pills before you get there because it is very overwhelming. When I was there I asked the Lord this question, what needs to be written? He was silent.

Abe Croaker, a missionary form Belgium, was visiting me in Portland and I said, “you ought to go down to Christian supply company. It’s a big Christian store in Portland it’s really great.”

So he went down there. And he came back. This is sort of on the order of Kmart, or Safeway, it’s a big place except it’s Christian.

And Abe came back and I said, “Well what did you think of all the neat stuff down there?” And

He said, “Well, there was a lot.”

I said, “Well did you find something you could take back to Belgium?”

He said, “Well, that’s the problem. I don’t know, maybe one or two books that I would want to take to European Christians. That would really be the essence of the gospel to them.”

Isn’t that amazing? I think we have to face this as Christian writers that we maybe blabbing in God’s face too much. I’m part of the problem. I put out a magazine. We have to be very careful that God doesn’t want us to live in want before him. To live in silence before him. To receive something better. Just because you can make a sale doesn’t mean that God is at work in that sale? You know what people in Christian book publishing call it? “The industry.” Now that is not all bad, but you know, I keep looking around for this Judean to come through the door with whips.

hope floats

i am feeling better today, thanks for your prayers. i will offer a scene from one of the many movies that have kept me company this week:

from hope floats. a scene where bertie (sandra bullock) and justin mattise (harry connick, jr.) are talking:

"who was your architect?" bertie

"you kidden' huh? that's half the fun."

"you go around smithville painting houses and you can do this? you could do so much more."

"i guess so huh."

"you know what i meant."

"i know what you meant. you're talking about the american dream. find something that you love then you twist it and torture it. try to find a way to make money at it. you spend a lifetime doin' that and at the end you can't find a trace of what you started out lovin'. what'd you start out lovin'?"

"i don't remember."

think about it. ask yourself, is this what the american dream is to me? talk to me.

Friday, May 28, 2004

momma's wisdom

i am ill today, i covet your prayers. so let me just post something my momma wrote. it blessed me and struck me that i'd never considered it before. Heaven is the name of my niece.

mom writes:
"the other day I was outside with Heaven and the wind was blowing. I told her, 'Do you want a hug from God?' and she said 'yes.' I told her 'open your arms up and let the wind hug you, that's God giving you a BIG hug. So each time the wind blows, God is sending us a hug. I love it when He does that.'"

and my mom says she isn't a poet.

Thursday, May 27, 2004


i've never done politics well, i rocket to the top of whatever organization or institution i get involved with and from there plummet like icarus. it's tragic really. and most of it is my own fault because i won't be "nice" to people who were not "nice" to me when i was a nobody. i won't play by any rule other than honesty. that is where i fall flat on my face. honesty as duane stephenson says, "is no buffet of pick and choose."

i've had many coworkers (usually women), who treat me like the doormat all year long, then give me some gift (why thanks) at christmas, for which i have no gift in return (i don't buy gifts for people who are mean to me). then they think that some gift makes their shabby behavior okay. it doesn't.

i once got a position in the church, and a lady "suddenly" became nice to me. before that she was--um, indifferent let's call it. so when she wanted to go out to breakfast with me i asked her, why now? she and i became friends, but it was inspite of the situation (i realized she had pure motives), i am not opposed to people being friendly to me after i've attained some "status" or some "position" but if those very same people are playing political games i simply won't play.

i have been cautioned to be nice to people in the christian writing industry. it's a really small business and people remember names. good. as they should. but it goes both ways. i know who has thrown me a crumb of kindness. i know who has not. i was emailed by THE POET for somewhere, and i don't remember where because i learned how to deal with a difficult father by deleting email liberally. that way i couldn't go back over the email incessantly and sear the hurtful words into my brain. i deleted the email from THE poet as well, so i scarcely remember the details, but i remember the name. oh yes, i remember the name.

this is one of my biggest gripes about "the industry." i thought we were all christians and called to live by another set of rules. i thought we were all fighting the good fight. but we are actually infighting. we are trying to compete. men who compare themselves with men are not wise. i see a gross lack of wisdom at times, but then there are those ladies, those men who are gracious and kind to me, unknown little writer lady me.

i begrudge the title poet to no one. i would everyone were a poet. the world cannot have too many poets. i begrudge success to no one. there is room at the King's table for all to dine. but politics are not allowed.

Wednesday, May 26, 2004


who gave God a vasectomy?
last i heard He was omnipotent
last i heard He was omniscient
last i heard He was omnipresent
who gave God a vasectomy?
who was brave enough to try?