By David Roth
©30th September, 2011
Sitting on a pristine stretch of sand
so stark and white when the sun peeks
from behind cottony puffs
of lead bottomed clouds
as to be composed of sugar.
An old handkerchief tied around my brow
to keep the salt laden sweat
from burning my eyes,
an ancient, well-worn Panama Jack
that’s a long way from Panama
and has long since lost its Jack
to shelter the pale, thin arch of my neck,
tattered denim shorts whose unequal legs
have as much to say about my life
as my words.
A lone pelican stares inquisitively
bobbing rhythmically in the gently lapping surf.
Black tipped, swallow-tailed gulls
sing an off key, harsh duet
as they circle my silence
waiting for a handout.
But for the gentle splash of encroaching tide,
rustling palm fronds,
and creation’s two most off-key singers,
I sit in silence pondering the what might have been
in another life, and another time.
I stand and lift my shaking palms to the sky
salt stings my eyes from tears of joy
as a soul, who days, weeks, years ago –
who really knows?
A prodigal returns
whose heart shouts the song of the redeemed
in words and melody only understood
by the blind now given sight,
the dead now brought to life
the captive now set free.
Free as the soul who one time wrote
“I once was lost, but now I’m found;
was blind, but now I see”
I, too can sing
of the freedom that severed the chains
that bound my soul to hopelessness
and let my spirit soar on eagle’s wings
with the song of a soul set free.
And they sang a new song, saying:
“You are worthy to take the scroll
and to open its seals,
because you were slain,
and with your blood you purchased for God
persons from every tribe and language and people and nation.
Revelation 5:9 (NIV)