Christmas Hurry

Hi everyone,
 
This poem reflects on how we can learn from Mary and the first Christmas when the holidays overwhelm us. Mary and Joseph must have had a stressful time traveling all the way to Bethlehem with the ticking clock of a baby on the way (Luke 2:1-7). Our crazy Christmas season has anxiety as well—but maybe that means we can share the same exhausted and fulfilling joy Mary and Joseph had when they held their son Jesus that night in the stable for the first time.
 
God bless
 
 

“Christmas Hurry”
 
rushed and breathless,
    running but coming up
        short as hectic schedules
   chase you around the clock.
when you collapse into its
        ticking hands, they throw you forward 
           again, launching you into another 
                      restless Christmas.
 
she, too, knows the jostling rushed
    ride of the season: a long, hurried
      journey but still arriving too late
             to get a bed to sleep in, and birth pains
                 won’t wait and there isn’t enough time
                         to look any longer, so she guesses
                   this will just have to be Christmas—
 
—but the rush of time stops
when he opens his new eyes to see her.
the draining hourglasses of the world
        mean nothing now:
she holds eternity in her arms.

 
 
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Christmas Hurry by Briana Batty is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

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The Waiting Room

Hi everyone,
 
This is another Advent poem, written for these weeks while we prepare ourselves for Christmas and celebrating Jesus’ birth into our world. Let us remember that while we wait for Jesus to come, we should do more than “watch and wait” for Him.* Our waiting season should be filled to overflowing with actively reaching out to the people around us, breaking out of our shells into the new life Christ’s birth heralds for us all.
 
God bless

*See Matthew 24:42 to 25:30 for several stories Jesus tells about waiting for the Second Coming of Christ – whenever we wait for Him, whether symbolically in Christmas Day or literally for His Return, Jesus’ words tell us to keep busy doing good work: “Happy that servant if his master comes home and finds him at work!” (24:42)
 
“Waiting Room”
 
waiting room in a doctor’s office,
an echoing white box where sounds
of the morning news on the television clash
with shuffling magazine pages.
the many people in the room all wait for the same
Healer and the news he brings.
Two sets of eyes watch the news but never
share a glance with each other.
the stories of arguing politicians, war, terror, and disaster
glaze over their staring eyes.
three sets of eyes read magazines, and four sets
fix on the minute hand circling
the clock as the room waits, waits, waits.
boredom traces some faces like a gray crayon,
but pale blue fear haloes others.
in one corner an old woman curls over, shaking,
eyes squeezed shut on the world,
only letting tears escape. the room is still and
full of the glazed eyes.
a boy sitting by his mother fidgets, turns,
sees the shaking woman.
he slides from his chair and
walks to her, touches her arm and smiles. she
opens her eyes. He holds out a pack of
tissues printed with cherry red cars and trucks,
and she takes one from the plastic with a
hesitant smile. A few sets of eyes
pull themselves from the screen, the pages, and
the clock, and the people realize
what they’ve been waiting for.
Then the door opens, the Healer walks out,
and he smiles at the boy with the tissues
who is already seeing his patients
 
Creative Commons License
The Waiting Room by Briana Batty is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.

Blizzard

Hi everyone,
This is a new poem for anyone who feels like their worries and troubles are piling up around them. The poem is partly inspired by the well-known “Footprints in the Sand” story (you can find it if you Google it). Sometimes when we pray, we feel abandoned because we don’t hear back right away from God. But in those times, He’s drawing ever closer to you, if you look for Him.
 
Stay strong, and God bless!

 
“Blizzard”
 
you look out your window,
shivering as you watch your worries
falling around your house,
drifting and stacking until they are
steep as windswept snow banks
keeping you locked inside.
you feel tiny, trapped, broken
looking out at a swirling blizzard
of events and fears and people
you can’t control.
 
lost in your little house in the storm
you call me
and I always answer, Dear Heart.
you tell me of the storm, the terrible snow
piling around you.
I say I need to go for a moment,
and you hang up, disheartened, lonely,
watching the storm thunder on, wind lashing
your frosty windows.
 
it is hours later when you hear,
of all things in this weather,
a knock on the door.
you find me there, shovel in hand
and a path through the drifts behind me.
I know you felt abandoned for a while
but Dear Heart, I was on my way,
digging you a path out of here
and back to where I am.
 
You bundle up in your coat
and follow me home through the storm.
 
 
 
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Blizzard by Briana Batty is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

Welcome!

Hello everyone, and welcome!

This blog is a collection of my Christian poetry, both old and new.  In the past, I’ve sent my poems to friends and family, but now I’d like to share these poems of faith to a wider audience as well.  You can read more about the background of this project on my About page.

For the holiday season, I plan on posting mostly Advent poems.  Some will be new, and others will be ones from past years that some of you might recognize.  As I go along, I’ll not only put up new material, but will post many of my previous poems so that you’ll have access to them online.   My posting schedule may be a little irregular in the beginning, but I hope to soon settle into posting a poem every two to three weeks.

Thanks to all the friends and family who supported me and got me this far.  I couldn’t have done it without you.  And most importantly, thanks to God for encouraging me to take this next step in sharing these poems with more people.

My first poem for you all is called “While I’m Waiting.”  It’s about how we need to take time to reflect during Advent about the core of Christmas: God’s love and salvation coming into the world for us.

God bless!

 

“While I’m Waiting”

this year, what will I do
while I’m waiting for Christmas?
I ask myself this as I list errands to run,
gifts to buy, food to make, decorations to hang.
In my rush, I start to jot down ‘wait’ on the list
with everything else.

I stop then, staring at the half-written word.
Wait.

I too often fill up that four-letter word
with a hundred tasks and
a million yammering thoughts.
I do not wait well.  I pace, I worry.
Minute by minute by minute
I check my watch.  I keep my hands
busy, busy, busy with things to do.

This year, I am going
to stop.

This year while I wait
I will carve out moments to sit,
to listen past the noise
of shopping malls and holiday music
for the story that gave the world joy again,
peace again, hope again:
a tale still as unassuming
as the stable where it all began.
The King of Grace born to us
to save the wayward, soothe the broken,
love every delightful, wondering heart.
that story is sitting patiently to be found,
in this season of anticipation.

I put aside my list for now.
it can wait.

Creative Commons License
While I’m Waiting by Briana Batty is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.