Hello all,
Here is an end of the year poem inspired by the Longwood Gardens Christmas Lights event. They decorate the entire, huge garden with Christmas lights, and thousands of people come to see them. It reminds me of how creativity and beauty can bring us all together. I want to think of that as a new year comes.
God bless,
We came to see the lights together.
They dance light-footed on branches of winter trees.
They wrap and spiral and bind our eyes to their beauty.
Excitement grips us. Each couple, family, and lone walker
jostles, pushes, squeezes, shouts, laughs, cries, stops, and stares
in the tour in the dark.
It seems we are as many in this crowd
as there are lights in the garden.
We walk beside a thousand faces
but do not know their names.
They are the kind of family you know only for a brief, shared moment of wonder.
Now we walk the night road home.
We make no sound: awe is our shared language.
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Listen by Morgan Prettyman Waad is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


Bakerwoman God

This poem was inspired by a list of “Images of God” from Schaffran and Kozak’s book “More Than Words” and my pastor, Rev. Palmer’s, insights on the image.

God bless,
“Bakerwoman God”
the bakerwoman knows
it’s work to make what’s good
on earth
it’s a long afternoon baking
in the kitchen heat to fill the house
with warm scents of fresh
bread like a welcome-home hug
when you walk through the door
it wears out arms and cramps wrists
to knead flour and eggs and yeast
together, and it takes
long-practiced hands to know when
dough is right for its transformation
it takes patience and good eyes
to see a sticky mix through the baking
to the golden conclusion
it’s wisdom to know where to send
the bread and to know who needs
its energy and comfort
it’s abundant love to give it
away and abundant joy to watch
the loaf feed love to thousands
it’s work to make what’s good
on earth,
the bakerwoman knows
Schaffran J, Kozak P. Images of God in: Schaffran J, Kozak P. More than words: prayer and ritual for inclusive communities. Meyer Stone Books: Oak Park, IL; 1998. p27.
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Bakerwoman God by Morgan Prettyman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

today i grow

In God’s Word, He tells us (Ecclesiastes 3:1-8, NIV): “There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot….” In days of change, I pray we can remember the past ways, rejoice in the new ways, and bring love to all the stages of our lives.
God bless,

“today i grow”
weeping my farewells
    I watch them cut her 
       branch by branch
down to her roots.
     I am not ready
          to see her shade stolen
          and her tangled arms
                  wave goodbye.
Yet, today I say farewell.
As she leaves, though, I must
       celebrate the new
            planted in her place.
in memory of her old limbs and
      knots and dappled days I
      know the skinny branches 
and fresh buds of
          twirling young flowers 
      are just
as precious as she.
     today I give welcome.
once upon a time
     eyes like mine must have watched 
her beginning:
     a seedling pale and green.
  A heart like mine
rejoiced at her growth and
    loved her in the early days
before she could shade others
   beneath years of slowly blooming wisdom.
In farewell, in welcome, in loving,
        today I grow. 

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today i grow by Morgan Prettyman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

And then I see

This poem is about a beautiful sunset I saw while out visiting the Southwest this holiday season.
God bless,
*P.S. I have updated the last stanza per my grandparents’ feedback.

“And then I see”
Stepping outside, I frown at the overcast 
lying across the clear blue heavens
I’d seen mere hours ago.
I climb in the car to drive away. My heart 
sinks sadly down, and
my eyes trail regretfully over
patches of blue still left
between streaks of charcoal.
And then I see the sunset:
molten yellow opens bright as a child’s eyes on
Christmas, peering into the darkness to find 
all the gifts of the world. I am 
dazzled and silenced by 
rose reds blooming over mountaintops.
Rippling orange and violet tapestries drape
over the horizon. Every ray of light is a
brushstroke to pull out the cool shadows of the
desert, tracing every mountain ridge. Like soft gray canvas, 
the dreary clouds now hold color in every fiber. 
I hear my grandmother, one seat ahead of 
me, tell a story about her brother when 
he was little: “Not long after my father died,
my brother was out on the porch, and he
pointed to the sunset and said: 
God made the sky so pretty so that Daddy 
wouldn’t want to come home.”
I gaze in speechless wonder and agree. 
How can anyone come back
from this?


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And then I see by Morgan Prettyman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


Hi everyone,
Everybody at some point wonders: Is there a God? I know I have. The answers I’ve found to that question are often simple—and one of them that strikes me again and again is the incredibly intricacy of nature itself. From the stars to the mystery of the human body, there’s a clear mark of thoughtful purpose behind it all. I see God’s love in how complex we are and how amazing our world is. It’s a silent message to us that He is there, and He loves what He made deeply.
God bless,

sometimes when I stumble
      it is Your creation that speaks the loudest
   to bring me back.
maybe the rocks don’t cry out,
           but they sing in the sunset 
                 over the mountains, and stars by the millions 
        peer down at me from an inky sky. summer leaves 
  with dazzling shades of green stretch for the clouds,
          and outside my window tiny brown birds fly on delicate wings—
  all too wonderful to be nothing 
                                                 but chance.
and then humanity,
          complex down to our DNA, with lungs full of songs
    and minds spilling over with stories, questions and dreams, 
             all too wonderful to be nothing
                                                 but chance.
these are the simple silent messages
          I admire the most, 
  Your world that speaks these words from You:
            “I made this with Love,
                  from the faraway star
            to your own hands
                        reaching out in wonder.
              My little one in this vast, vast world,
          know that I am reaching back
                in just as much wonder
          for you.” 

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Listening by Morgan Prettyman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.


Hi everyone,
This is a poem inspired by Jesus’ teaching to his disciples that even a little faith can do great things. Matthew 17:20 (NIV) says, “…I tell you the truth, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
It’s easy to feel like we don’t have enough faith to face trials or even believe in something, but Jesus tells us that we don’t need much faith to do what seems impossible. Maybe he used the metaphor of the seed because seeds change and grow, and so does our faith and understanding.
God bless!

i am a
     seed of faith.
i am small
    and get blown in the wind.
i am hard to pick up
     and easy to drop,
but i am here
     and i am strong.
i am not strong because
     i am big
but because in my core
    is a Spirit
who nurtures and grows
     and makes me more
          through its power.
i am a seed
     of faith
          and i have been planted.
through summer storms
     and winter cold
          i hold on.
i spread and i change,
     i break free
         of the surface
into the air.
     my roots, branches, leaves
we were not meant
     to stay seeds forever.
the joy of a seed
     is that it grows.

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Seed by Morgan Prettyman is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.