How do I write you?

IMG_1214I took a quick sip from my coffee and was almost disgusted to be greeted by cool liquid. (I ordered hot café latte.) That says much I guess about the time I’ve spent in this coffee shop at Adriatico.

I was preparing for a message for our church’s youth on Sunday. By now I’ve spent hours dissecting the Word and trying to make sense of what I’m reading. As a breather, I stopped pouring over the verses before me and started watching the other people inside the coffee shop.

In my mind backstories for these people were forming: who they are, what they were doing before they got to this place, who they are with, what they are talking about, what kind of coffee they usually order, etc.

All those details were already entering my mind when thoughts of you set in. You were not really a farfetched idea considering that you are a coffee buddy and I was in a coffee shop. It was only natural that I remember you. My mind needed a creative outlet, and our coffee and food trysts would have been a perfect source of inspiration for writing. I decided against it though, against writing in general. I got too lazy writing without a laptop to type on.

Then I also had to ask myself, “What do I write about you anyway?” Or more precisely, how do I write you, if I should write you at all? Should I write you as you are, or should I wrap you up with fiction? As one of our students had pointed out, a coffee shop love affair would be too “cute”, and I was seriously tempted to try to write one.

But I happen to be preparing for a Biblical message on love, and love (at least the romantic kind) happens to be one of my monsters, and I find that monsters are chased away and not nursed. At this point, I wouldn’t want you to be a monster in my mind that I’ll have to chase away.

So instead of writing you, I just continued sipping my cold coffee while staring at other people and entertaining thoughts of our next random coffee date.


There couldn’t be any other day like this


for JB

There couldn’t be any other day like this.
Though my heart smoldered with the setting sun,
my thoughts are embers that can’t be dismissed.

Towards my cheeks, the rancid breeze sends a kiss.
This moment can’t possibly be o’erdone.
There couldn’t be any other day like this.

Don’t you e’er stare at the sky and find bliss,
taking freely what the hea’ens had given?
My thoughts are embers that won’t be dismissed.

Don’t the crimson sky forge for you mem’ries,
or is your sentiment out of season?
Surely, there is no other day for this.

How much of your time is already leased?
Friend, won’t you please give me other options?
My thoughts are embers you should not dismiss.

Forgive me if my overture persists.
This scene is too fetching to abandon.
There couldn’t be any other day like this.
My thoughts are embers that can’t be dismissed.

I was drawn by your sadness

I was drawn by your sadness.

Like a fly,
I found the reek
of your pungent past compelling,
overpowering my senses,
subduing my soul.
Still, I snuffled closer, closer,
until even the tiny organisms
eating you up found their way to me.

I was drawn by your sadness
but never did I believe
that I was going to be the sun
to your hopeless skies.
No, honey.
I’ve always known
that I wouldn’t want
to eclipse you
by my own darkness.

I was drawn by your sadness.
Like a fly,
I knew I couldn’t do anything
about your rotting past.
I cannot rise over your nightfall.
I cannot drive away
the shadows circumscribing you,
especially not
when I have my own stench,
my own eventide to hide from.

And yet~

I was drawn by your sadness, still.
From afar, I watched you chase after
the horizon,
and in my heart I pleaded
for the Sun to draw you,
to smolder you,
to set you and your past ablaze
until you are mere ash –
a purposeful flotsam
towards the beautiful sunset vista.

I implored for myself, too,
that may the tides ever rise
to receive my filth
and my faltering wings,
and forever wash me
towards her bosom deep,
where, finally,
I am a nimble debris
wrecked by grace.


Perhaps, never again to be drawn
by your sadness,
I shall in expectation anticipate
when the Heavens shall storm you
towards the deep end of the sea
where I in waiting solitude reside
and willingly,
we shall become mud.
You and I a perfect mixture
of salvaged wretchedness,
once sorrowful hearts
restored by salvation,
never again to be captivated by shadows,
but caught irreversibly
by the Light in each other’s souls.

for JE