In this poem I reflect on Exodus 13:21, which is about how God guided the Israelites to their promised land: “By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night.” Thousands of years later, God still guides us, showing us the way to life abundant for ourselves and the many people of the world.
God bless.



This Fire in the desert night 
     Calls me,
        Stays me,
             Shows me.

The Clouds in the desert day 
      Lead me,
          Stop me,
              Guide me.

They are a ballet of flame and smoke.
       The more I watch them, the less form they have.
Just like when you stare at a painting until the colors blur,
          I see the fire spread and glow in places I had never looked before 
                and I see the clouds resting their shade over the people
         I have forgotten.

The form is a mystery, the call is clear.

Creative Commons License
Pillars by Briana Batty 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?


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