Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Stretch Out Your Hand

It was my turn to write the 19th annual Christmas poem & I really struggled with it. After 18 years of poems I guess it can be difficult to approach the subject in a new way. I'm still not sure what I think about it as a Christmas poem, but it's what came & it's what went out in our cards this year.  

If you're feeling brave you can read the other 18 poems here. Dr. M wrote the ones where his name is listed first and I wrote the ones where mine is. 


Rebecca Jo at Knit By God's Hand gave me the idea for this poem in this post. It went in a different direction from what I thought when I started, but she got me started down this road.

Stretch Out Your Hand 

Every day my head snaps back
in surprise at evil.
Like a child, wide-eyed and amazed,
every time. Upheaval.

I try to be cynical,
to harden my heart.
Jaundiced and jaded,
impervious, apart.

But, like a child, my head snaps back
again and again
and again and I'm gasping for breath
calling your name.

Lord God Jehovah.
God of this morass.
God of my tender heart.
God of first and last.

Hear my cry as my head snaps back
for the wounded world
and for the sometimes wounded me
and sometimes hope tightly furled.

Jesus said, "Stretch out your hand."
That withered hand made whole.
Is that the answer then?
Unfurl the hope and free the soul.

And one more time my head snaps back
as I realize the meaning -
that I am not a mute observer
while the world awaits its healing.

Sing noel for Jesus has come!
His outstretched hand touches mine
and anoints my head and heart to
go forth go forth this Christmastide!

Dana and Mike Rhyne
Christmas 2010


This poem is being posted as part of the early edition of One Shot Wednesday. Please go here to check out the other poets.

22 comments:

  1. I think you did a fine job, Bug... Merry Christmas!

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  2. so good that his outstretched hand touches ours - merry christmas to you!

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  3. My goodness ... that is POWERFUL!!!!!

    Very impressive...

    The part I read over & over is:
    Jesus said, "Stretch out your hand."
    That withered hand made whole.
    Is that the answer then?
    Unfurl the hope and free the soul.

    Mercy... I have to say, that is beautiful. Give yourself credit because that's an amazing poem!

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  4. I must tell you Bug..this is one of the most powerful poems i ever read about Christmas!
    STUNNING..:)

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  5. It's never good to be calloused to evil. Thoughtful piece, Bug. Merry Christmas!

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  6. I really like your poem...resonates for me...putting yourself out there and getting hurt...but having faith in Jesus's word to keep you strong :)

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  7. One should always take offense at evil and injustice. It's a beautiful poem, Dana. Thank you.

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  8. Christmassy, but not mawkish. Well done.

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  9. I like that head snapping image.
    x

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  10. Merry Christmas, Bug! I think you did a fine job. Many tight rhymes. My favorite passage was "I try to be cynical,/ to harden my heart. / Jaundiced and jaded, / impervious, apart."

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  11. this is lovely...i enjoy the miracles...my fav is the taking of the man out of the city to spit in his eyes...but stretching out the hand i like that as well...and the challenge it calls us to...

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  12. Hot little tears in the corners of my eyes. Wow, Dana. You are a POET.

    Thank you for sharing it!

    I have about 30 years worth of "Annual Poems" for the people who were on my ggrandfather's Yule list and none of those poems is as powerful as this. Wow. Just wow.

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  13. A beautiful message indeed...i love this Bug! Merry Christmas to you! :-)

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  14. "my head snaps back
    in surprise at evil"

    Me too, Bug. I never get used to it.

    I wish you and your family a wonderful Christmas and much health, happiness and peace in the new year. All the best, Bug.
    Bella

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  15. I think its a wonderful image of Christmas. Thank you for sharing it with us.

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  16. your struggle was worth it...this was a wonderful christmas poem..thanks for sharing..pete

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  17. Isn't it wonderful that Christmas arrives just when we need to feel that touch? Lovely 19th!

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  18. Isn't it wonderful that Christmas arrives just when we need to feel that touch? Lovely 19th!

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  19. Your last verse made my day! Thank you for the reminder I needed to hear. Merry Christmas!

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  20. Dear The Bug,
    I also enjoyed! And it reminds me of the poems I put on my blog that you wrote, earlier this year.

    Like cul de sac's comments above mine,
    my head snaps back/in surprise at evil--

    I think that happens to me too. But I never thought of it like that.

    Happy Christmas to you and C.L.
    Ann T.

    Drive safely and be happy!

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Thanks for stopping by - I'd love to hear what you have to say!