Archive for the Poetry Category

Reconfiguring Second Chances

Posted in Poetry on September 29, 2010 by alysonnschmidt

Allow me to preface this piece with a little bit of explanation. Normally, I prefer the audience try to figure it out for themselves, but this song (just a poem now; will be a song when there’s music put to it) is personal, and has a unique beginning.

It began as an assignment, the final actually, for my Spiritual Formation 2 class. We had to write a worship form. Some wrote plays, some wrote prayers, some wrote entire sermons (the ambitious ones); I chose to write a song, as music ranks right up there with sleeping and breathing in my life, and this is what came out. It’s not meant to be sung in a church setting necessarily, rather it’s meant for a more mainstream audience with all their unique experiences, diverse backgrounds and range of perspectives and interpretations. Worship involves the whole of a person’s life. It is not confined to the church, to prayer or to a priest.

Sometimes, I think my prayers are ingenuine, even when they’re just inside my head. It’s so easy to pray following a formula rather than just conversing with God, our Father, the only One capable of unconditional love; do we really mean what we are saying? Are we really sorry for our sins? Have we fully grasped the concept of God’s forgiveness?

But to face a tragic situation that we can’t let go of because it either moved us closer to God or caused us to push Him away, to recognize that experience for what it is (or was), and to move on in faith and God’s grace: that is worship, too. Everything we do should be in worship to the One who created us. But let’s be real; that’s not how we live most of the time. We like the human perspective rather than concluding we’re not all that and a bag of potato chips.

I’ve spent too much time trying to get by on my own. Stupid pride. Pride causes too much stress because to rely on yourself means you’re the only one you can blame. However, surrendering my life to God, facing my personal demons, and living in faith rather than pride (i.e. humility) allows God to wrap His arms around me and pull me out of the pit I’ve been living in. To borrow a line from Pastor Tom Barron, “it’s not about me.” It took tragedy for that idea to fully ingrain itself inside my head. What will it take for you?




Remember when we thought these days were promised;
We’d talk about growing up and getting out.
The future was our oyster, but now the pearl is the past
Because I hit the gas, took the turn too fast.
I heard you scream when the glass caved in
A snowblind moment synchronized sirens out of time;
Erratic beating in your chest,
Don’t say it all works out for the best.

If this is the end, maybe I forgot the way to get back home.
You already forgave me, but still You want to save me;
Raise these bones, I know, You require better than this.

When prayer feels like sending words to outer space,
And again I forfeit faith for safety in the cage pride built
With insecurity, so they say;
The captain goes down with the ship
But when the world ends I know God’s not going down with it.

If this is the end, maybe I forgot the way to get back home.
You already forgave me, but still You want to save me;
Raise these bones, I know, You require better than this.


You’ll Never Know This Is About You

Posted in Poetry on September 27, 2010 by alysonnschmidt

From your bed we faded; and in the dark we could shatter.
So godless and limited, not able to think.
Go on, do what you gotta do; let me be.

Can you see the red bridge?
Damp wood wrapped like a present
In a green moss ribbon disappearing as the river rushed out.
Feet suspended, you whispered

No one knows where the mind wanders. Away,
I imagine, but never as far as could be.

So, congratulations, boy, let me be the one to present
The award for best performance.