Friday, April 30, 2010

Welcome aboard, Ma'am

(by R.P.Edwards)

It’s just not right
Skirts beneath the sea
Their fingers on the button
Starting World War III
Launching nukes a plenty
To bring a fiery end
It’s just not right
That job belongs…to men

Squids and skimmers.  Those are the affectionate terms I remember from my navy days.  Squids were submariners and skimmers were the wave walkers and, although our “base” had both kinds, the underwater folk, along with their “boats,” were on the other side.  Separate facilities, and separate lives and, although I rather enjoyed seeing the sun now and then (despite the occasional bouts with seasickness) I sometimes wondered what it would have been like to try the “other” life; the life where you “run silent, run deep.”

In the news is the word that, starting in 2012, women will be allowed in the sub service.  Up until now…no dames.  And the reasoning?  I suppose it has something to do with the tight quarters, the extended deployments, and young, vibrant military folk crossing paths day, after day, after day.  Could effect “cohesion” and control.  However, the wise ones say tish-tosh and…away we go.  At first it will only be officers.

Now, doing a bit of research, it seems that half our nuclear “punch” is cruising beneath the waves…somewhere.  And, brother, these super boats are no joke!  Sure, the surface craft are formidable and fierce and, there’s plenty of feminine brass aboard; but these submarines? Well, they carry enough radioactive fireworks to light this globe up!  So, my point is simply this; when it comes to such massive destruction; when it comes to Armageddonish doings; shouldn’t a man be doing the crazy thing?  Isn’t that where we men excel? Isn’t that part of our design?  Seems to me that the feminine element will just get in the way.  But, I suppose with enough training these lady hawks can push the “button” as well as any man.  So hooray for equality and political correctness!  Hooray for the modern navy!  Yes, hooray for Ms Hornblower’s command: 3...2...1...launch!  Yes ladies, now you can do it all.  Pity.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Cross of Contention

The More…of me
(by R.P.Edwards)

I’m so much more
Than mind and flesh
I’m spirit, that with these doth mesh
And for a span
A triune “one”
Your father, brother, lover, son
And then the violent, cleaving part
Where spirit flies from silenced heart
And tears are shed for my decay
And time is marked by year…and day
As you live with fading dread
Believing I am lifeless, dead
And your world is filtered through this truth
That dreams all die, with dying youth
Recall, dear one, and then release
And then lay hold, of promised peace
For I live still, on distant shore
For He hath said… “You’re so much more”

A promise to a dear friend.  A friend, who, as a young medic had cared for his fellow soldiers in the War to end all Wars; World War I.  Riley Bembry, a prospector of sorts, had, in 1934, erected a Latin cross on Sunrise Rock, a nondescript outcropping in the Mojave Desert.  It was a memorial; a remembrance from one soldier to his fellows who had fallen in the service of their country.  For nearly five decades he maintained the simple tribute and, as his life’s force slowly ebbed he asked his dear friends, Wanda and Henry Sandoz, to carry on the tradition; to carry on…the memorial.  They have done their best.

Well, you know the story.  There was a complaint about a religious symbol on government land.  There was a sympathetic court that wanted it taken down.  There was a clever congressman who kept it up by legislative daring (maybe you don’t know that part.  Rather interesting.  He is a California Representative by the name of…Jerry Lewis) And then there was the “box” the jurists placed over the “offensive” object even though the Sandoz’s had traded five acres of their own land for the one holding the cross (thus placing it on private property).   And so, finally, the Supremes, in a five to four decision, decide maybe the “separation” thing doesn’t have to get rid of all religious symbols. 

Offended by the cross.  Nothing new.  But the greater offense comes by the neglect of legislators to guard our precious constitution.  The United States Constitution, that near-sacred document that ends with the phrase, “in the year of our Lord.”  Where the chief executive must swear (remember the words, “so help me God“?) or affirm his commitment to the same.  Where a ten day span for signing a bill into law can only be lengthened by the Sabbath’s pause (Sunday…the Christian observance).  Yes, offense “should” be taken by a nation that elects representatives who leave, unchallenged, the whim of a few; the few who have reformed our foundation to support their own godless sepulcher. 

One final thought:  Why not just a statue of a doughboy in pose?  Why not a polished stone with an etching of dates and details?  Because, with the cross, whether you’re devout or no; with the cross there is a pointing…to the resurrection.  Yes, more than a mere remembrance, there is a knowing; a certain holding to the hope…that life does not end.  That there is more to “me” than what you see.  A “more” …that goes on…into eternity.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

The end user

The End User
(by R.P.Edwards)

Pity the poor auto
That makes it’s way…to me
It’s future, now, is certain
It’s ending…clear to see
For I am not a fixer
Collector?  Never I
Just  friendly time together
Until, alas, you die

It can be downright spiritual.  An “I need your help, Lord” as I delve into the engine compartment of the old ‘93 Buick.  “I need this car to last a little longer.”  And then, with the near flat-line condition averted, “Thank you, Lord. Thank you.” 

It’s been a pattern with me.  We get a ride that is heading into it’s golden/hospice years.  Fine to begin with, but destined for the morgue.  As a rule, I don’t even bother washing the beast.  And waxing? Totally out of the question.  O, my wife may attend to such things, but it’s not in me to do it.  In fact, I’m pleased if I just keep up with tire pressure and fluids.  It’s a defect, I suppose.  Yes, when it comes to cars, I use them; abuse them, and eventually…lose them.  And the thought of passing it on before the graveyard?  That’s a foreign notion, indeed.  You see, I’m definitely not a fixer.  At least in the “automobile” department.

Well, it seems from the news that I have much in common with the federal government.  Immigration unrest, healthcare budget shenanigans, foreign policy flimsiness; Uncle Sam, like myself, appears to be an “End User.” Good intentions, plus gross neglect, lead to the junkyard.  And the temporary, “have to” fixes, only delay the inevitable.  What this “vehicle” really needs…is a new owner.  I hope these owners (leasers, actually) are ready.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Monday, April 26, 2010

No apologies

No Apologies
(by R.P.Edwards)

Apologize for being late
Or forgetting this or that
Apologize for a cough or sneeze
Or reactions to your cat
But in this day of clueless ease
From those who teach our youth
Never, never, never, never,
Never, never! NEVER!!
Apologize…for the truth

It was one of those lines that stood out.  A phrase that invoked a kind of “yeah, that ‘s right” reaction.  The setting:  I was in church and the minister was reminding us of a thing or two (good preachers do that.)  And the “things” of which he spoke, well, let’s just say that modern academia…is clueless. 

Some groundwork: This morning I viewed some pictures of D-Day online.  A member of this yahoo “group” I frequent had posted it and, since Mom and Pop are a part of that generation, I was interested.  It got me to thinkin,’…so many lives; so many young fresh faces…cut down in their prime.  So many potential relationships, families, children, grandchildren…not to be.  Frankly, I can’t even imagine the magnitude of it.  Sure, I can grieve over those brave souls who defend us now, but, a WWII vet I sometimes speak with, when talking about the casualties of the current conflicts, he said, “We’d lose more men…before lunch.”  Again, I can’t even imagine.

Here’s the gist:  That generation that literally saved the world.  If you’ll allow me…That generation that the Lord used…to save the world, well, they had the ten commandments on the wall.  They had prayer and scripture reading in the public classroom.  They had clear definitions of right and wrong, good and evil, and, it was only after their sacrifice…that the twisters, redefiners, took hold, and took power.

So, to those who chafe at the oozings of academia and Hollywood, there’s a good reason.  You see, we are not from them.  They did not bring us here, and we are not birthed of their “knowledge” and notions.  Indeed, their “novel” definitions are merely old, failed, apostasies…in new clothes.  So, when the movie ‘teaches,’ and the actor ‘preaches,’ and the politician ‘proclaims,’ and the new ‘reverends’ exclaim; look down.  Look down to the blood stained foundation on which they stand.  It’s not my blood.  It’s not their blood.  It’s the life’s essence of those who have gone before and, if for no other reason, for them, for those who gave all…we must never, never, never, apologize…for the truth.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Don't Touch!

Mama said
(by R.P.Edwards)

“Unintended consequences”
Said the little boy
Whose finger bore a bandage, red
Whose mood was far from joy
“The whirring fan seemed so much fun
Though mama said, “Don’t touch!”
 So now I’ve learned, that Mamas know
And kids? Well, not so much”

It was one of those early memories.  One of those rare pre-school events that can be recalled, O these many decades later.  As I remember it, there was this fan, see.  Not an out of reach ceiling fan, mind you, but one on kid level; in the touching zone.  And brother, I wanted to touch it!  And why not?  It was big; it had large, shiny whirring blades and, as if giving an open invitation to the small ‘uns, there was plenty of room in the protective guard (pre reg days).  Anyway, Mama, knowing the evil nature of children, strictly warned me to NOT touch the fan.  So, naturally, when she left the room…I stuck my hand into the blur.  “Mommy!” I cried, “I did it!”  As a result, I had a nasty cut on my finger, and one of the fan blades was bent.  This, dear reader, is my earliest recollection of ‘unintended consequences.’  But, with a lifetime of ‘recalls’ I can tell you this…I didn’t learn the lesson very well.

Heard a little bit about recent reports concerning Healthcare Bill projections.  Seems that the rosy picture painted by our leaders…was just that, a picture. Turns out in reality this monster legislation will be a money pit, and a mausoleum .  Yes, with the millions of baby boomers (present!) getting ready to jump on the Medicare bandwagon, it seems this group will indeed find less ‘Medi’ and ‘Care,’ not to mention the penalties the younger folk will have to endure and, incredibly, the millions who will still be out of the loop. Yes, a classic case of unintended consequences.  But, to give them credit…the fan looked so pretty.

That’s what I think.  How about you? Click comments below…and say.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

If Lincoln picked a Jurist

One honest word
(by R.P.Edwards)

Just one word to clarify
To make the meaning…stand
No more vague peripheries
Or spinning slight of hand
No more ‘round the edges
With winks and verbal cues
A simple word…in honesty
That’s what we need…from you

Mr. Lincoln had only been president a very short time and, incredibly, as half the nation recoiled in disgust (preparing to secede) and the other rejoiced with the election of a “one of us” candidate who had no problem putting the “slave” owner in his place; the tall and lanky former log splitter, just moments after his inaugural speech, was called upon to fill an unexpected Supreme Court vacancy caused by the wayward kick of a most disagreeable army mule.  On this spring day, in the oval office, he met with Senate leaders in preparation for the “pick.”  In an unusual move to promote openness and transparency the chief executive allowed a few representatives of the press into the room.  “Mr. President!” said the well-dressed gentleman from the Richmond Examiner; “Mr. President, are you willing to pick a justice who believes Americans have the right to choose…slavery?”  The new leader looked at his fellow “leaders” and, pausing to reflect on the national hemorrhaging, he then replied, “Well, as other presidents have stated, I don’t have a ’litmus test’ when it comes to the judiciary.  I naturally want one who respects the constitution and the tenets found therein.”  FOUR YEARS LATER:  The war-weary commander-in-chief is again called upon to pick a Supreme Court justice.  In this brief span he had endured, not only the untimely death of his son, Willie, but the pressing knowledge of the hundreds of thousands--on both sides--cut down in their prime, not to mention the millions affected by the loss of manhood’s bloom.  As before, the press is allowed in and, in a most magnanimous move, the same fellow from the Confederate Capital is allowed audience.  He poses the same question.  This time, however, the response is less oblique.  “Will I consider a pro-slavery justice to grace the bench?!” said the graying elder as he locked eyes with the standing (and guarded) representative of the “Old South.”  “Will I consider a anti-freedom candidate to put on the sacred robes?” he adds, standing and reaching for his black overcoat.  “No! Never! Not now…or ever will I consider placing a judge who is so corrupt as to think that owning, oppressing, debasing, raping, wounding and murdering another human being is somehow found in our “inalienable rights!” Now, away with this man! and tell general Grant to press, press, press! Until all remnants of this vile institution are removed from this sacred, God-given republic!”

The above fantasy was constructed after my eavesdropping awareness of the televised meeting of President Obama and his Senate leaders concerning--you guessed it--a supreme court pick.  One question was allowed; it concerned abortion, and the President used the weary line, “I don’t have litmus tests for any of these issues.”  Pleeease!  Let’s just be honest, shall we?  Of course he’ll pick a pro-abortion candidate!  Of course he won’t pick a pro-life jurist!  Why not say it?  Why not be honest?  Why not say…what we all know?

How about this for an option.  It’s called “finish the question,” or “add a word.”  Here’s how it works.  “Mr. President, do you believe, under the constitution, that a woman has a right to choose?”  “Choose what?”  “Do you believe a woman has a right to choose…Death?” “Death for whom?”  “Death for her unborn baby?” Or, how about this: “Mr. President, do you believe the unborn baby has a right to choose?”  “Choose what?”  “Choose life, Mr. President; Choose life.”

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Vigilance redo

Vigilance redo
(by R.P.Edwards)

For lack of use, it languishes
Forgotten, in the back
Once a bulwark
Strong and sure
It withers from attack
Pressed by useless fancies
That came when work was through
Let’s reach, again, for vigilance
And fight the fight, anew

“Where is it,” a mumbled message to no one as the old man bends and, with his right hand methodically scoots the two-tiered circular cupboard thing in the corner (some call it a “Lazy Susan”) looking for, of all things…oatmeal.  On and on it turns as his aging eyes gaze into the maze like a prospector hoping for just the slightest glint…of gold.  Finally, eventually, in the “not often” spot, he sees it; a tiny flash of color that betrays the container.  Soon the quick stuff is bubbling in the microwave.  Fiber is on the way.  Good boy.

Funny thing about what we use, or don’t.  The “often” stuff is in our face.  We know how to get it.  We know where to put it.  Other “items,” however, if not in the “now” category, they get pushed back, out of the way, out of sight, and truly…out of mind.

Well, it appears that some in the lofty seats are a bit disturbed by Tea Parties and other protest rallies.  Thinking it odd, or even seditious (what a laugh) they express alarm that “Americans” are finally doing…what they’re supposed to do.  In other words; holding their elected “representatives” accountable.  But, this isn’t a binge of the fringe; no, it’s a returning to the burning; a reaching back and embracing of the heart fire that moved a patriot’s bloodied and frozen feet.  A preserving of the war-weary flag as “the rockets red glare” gave evidence of the enemies malevolent missiles.  It’s a back to basics kind of thing and, since we were so distant from it; it seems strange.  But, as the unelected elite try to redefine us, try to dismiss and disparage us, let us remember--let us remember as we continue to do what is right--that our inherited freedom does not come from them.  They did not bring us here, and their very seats of privilege totter upon pillars of which they have little part, and often disdain. 

Back to that Lazy Susan cupboard; if what you wanted wasn’t visible, it meant either it was pushed to the middle or, worse yet, flung to a far corner.  My second oldest (now mid-twenties) reminded me that when he was a single-digit tyke we’d sometimes have him crawl into the dark cavern to retrieve the needful thing.  Yes, sometimes it takes a child to do it.  And oh, that we too would be simple, pure, and vigilant in our pursuit of true liberty.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Oklahoma City...and empathy

The Difference
(by R.P.Edwards)

Sympathy and Empathy
The difference…by degree
One is sorry for your loss
The other… “once, was me”
So sympathy is precious
A warm extended hand
But empathy embraces
“Your pain…I understand”

Fifteen years ago, today, a malcontent by the name of Timothy  McVeigh parked a chemical laden rental truck in front of the Alfred P. Murrah Federal Building in Oklahoma City and, after lighting a fairly quick fuse, he then made a hurried exit moments before the enormous explosion that not only claimed 168 innocent lives, but also shocked the nation.  Fifteen years ago, today.

Well, since I’ve been keeping a journal for quite some time I thought perhaps I would have mentioned said event in my ancient scribbles.  So, after going into the vault (basement) and retrieving the appropriate notebook, I turned to the vicinity and…nothing.  Not a mention on that day, or thereafter.  Nothing but the simple actions and anxieties of yours truly.  Seems I was still in a “probationary” period for my “new” job and this, and other family related issues…drew my focus.  Typical.

The word…is empathy.  An “I know what you’re going through” kind of thing.  I’m sure, at the time, I expressed some sympathy at the untoward loss (especially for the children), but it was not personal.  It was not a heart wrenching/tearing event.  It was more akin to the emotional moving produced by a well crafted movie or play.  Yes, I have a “feel” for you, but not a knowing.

Having said that, I do believe there are those among us with true empathy.  I am certain there are many, silently beside us, whose arms are not merely guessing, but, with the embrace, bring a certain knowing and burden bearing.  And, for these; for these who revisit their old wounds in order to heal, I say, thank God.  Yes, thank God for these who have been horribly hurt…and yet dare to ease the pain of another.  So, concerning the many around us who are suffering (if you’ll look; they are there) if you, if especially you, know their pain, know their agony, know…their despair; then please, please, reach out; reach out to them and say… “I know what you’re going through.”  Sometimes…that’s all that can be done.  And sometimes…that’s all that’s needed.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Ashes to Ashes

The Plume
(by R.P.Edwards)

A little ash
To slow your pace
To cool your jets
To know your place
A little dust
To cloud your air
To ground your dreams
To curb your care
A little trouble
A pressured pause
To glean the gifts
To claim the cause
Perchance to learn
By way of wait
The truth…of small
A glimpse…of Great

You can’t go over.  You can’t go through.  You might be able to go around, but it will take a long, long time.  And so, though you be prince or pauper, lawyer or lout, gorgeous or gnarled; you wait.  No, I’m not talking of the Icelandic burp from a volcano that has paralyzed a third of the world’s air travel; but I speak of a rather vital automobile artery not far from this station; one of those roads that has the importance of a “number,” but not quite enough significance to merit bridges and overpasses.  Thus, when the time is right (wrong, actually) a train will cause all our “causes” to be put on hold.  And, since these shiny slivers of steel belong to a spur, and not a travelin’ line, the wait can be long, indeed.

Now, as for the vexing volcano; I find it amusing that we, the masters of all, are so easily humbled, debased, laid low.  Yes, a non-tourist hot spot with a difficult name (Eyjafjallajoekull) clears its throat, and the multiplied millions are paralyzed, powerless…and pouty.  But, instead of bemoaning our extended stopover, perhaps we should pause and consider…our end.  We are, after all, dust.  And, though we blow about in our hurried pursuits for a few decades, more or less; our physical end…is eventually, ash.  So, since we have been given a gift of a few non-hurried minutes; perhaps we should consider eternal things.  Perhaps we should,  while we have a few non-scheduled moments, reach beyond ourselves to the someone…who beckons.  To the someone whose touch, can make the mountains…melt.

   The mountains melt like wax before the LORD, before the Lord of all the earth. The heavens proclaim his righteousness, and all the peoples see his glory.  
Psalm 97:5,6

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Parenthood, Christie style

(by R.P.Edwards)

“No, Johnny!
No, Sue!
Put that back
It’s not good for you!
Yes, it’s pretty
Yes, it’s sweet
But I’m the boss
Of what you eat.
Now, put that down!
And save your tears
And madam, sir,
Let me make this clear
I am older, stronger, wise
So, hush your mouths!…
And we’ll get some fries”

I was in one of those discount food stores.  You know the place; where the basics are less (sometimes much less), but the ambiance is not, let me say--chic.  Anyway, I was shuffling along the first aisle (I love these places) and, up ahead, I heard the distinct, authoritative voice of a stern traffic cop who was calmly, but forcefully, keeping three vehicles…in line.  In other words; a young mom was shopping with three adorable, but hard to control, halflings.  I remember one conversation in particular:  We were near the cereal wannabes (knock offs of name brands.  Some good, others not so much).  Her young cherub-like man cub desperately needed some faux cheerios.  She told him, “Ok, we’ll buy those.  But I’ll make you eat the whole box by yourself.  I’ve tried them before…and they’re terrible.  And you, sir, will eat the whole box…by yourself.”  The cereal stayed on the shelf.

The other day I saw a brief interview involving the new governor of New Jersey, Chris Christie.  It appears that “The Garden State” is at the point of insolvency and, as promised, the chief executive is doing something about it.  And…it hurts.  Yes, by using his pulpit and pen the new parent of the state is doing what good moms and dads do; running the household…within the budget.  And, naturally, he’s getting some heat over it.  Yes, much like the young’ns in the store, there are many on the public dime who want everything they see.  But the big guy with the wallet and the wisdom, knows better.  And, apparently that’s what the citizens of New Jersey…voted for.  So the question is:  what about the rest of us?

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


The Gospel
(by R.P.Edwards)

The telling
The hearing
The believing
The change
The Gospel, eternal
To the world…very strange
A Savior
A sinner
A sacrifice…for
A rising
A welcome
To life…evermore

It’s a residential area just over the tracks; just past what used to be a bustling downtown.  True enough, fifty years ago this hub was a happening place; shops, movie theaters, restaurants, and lots of industry.  Now, very little of that remains, but the small protestant church…it’s still here; and there was a revival goin’ on, and we were attending.

Now, to the unfamiliar, a “revival” is a special grouping of church services geared towards reminder, renewal, and restoration.  It’s kind of a vacation for the soul.  Just as a physical “time off” can revitalize the body and bones, a revival is a kind of  “time in” in order to refocus our affections; to remember what it’s all about; and Who it’s all about.  It’s a time to shake off complacency, and get reacquainted with the Lord, and each other.

Anyway, this small, pasty white, rectangular building was situated on a crooked corner and the parking lot gave testimony of a time when people walked to work, and to church.  In other words…small.  So, we parked on the street and, as we walked to and in, we offered our hands and a good word to those who cheerfully greeted us.  Some we knew.  Others, not.  But we had a common cause, a common passion, a common…Father.  And, by nights end, songs of praise and worship had gone up, the “word” had gone forth, burdens were shared and lifted, and things were not nearly as dire…and they had been.

You know, some say that it was a spiritual awakening that birthed the American dream, and dreamers.  It stands to reason, if “freedom” was birthed there, perhaps “there” is where we need to begin…again.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Monday, April 12, 2010

No left leaners, please

The Leaners
(by R.P.Edwards)

Leftward leaning
Is alright
When picking a movie
For the night
Or picking a cause
To love/eschew
Or picking classes
At liberal U
Or picking colors
For a car
Or picking a favorite TV star
But leftward leaning should never be
A judge who judges
You and me
Yes, leave the leaners
At the gate
From judgment’s seat
We want it…straight

“This is where I want to end up,” Emerson muttered as the last, slightly soiled (a latte accident) page of the thesis was placed at the far end of the rather long, dark, marble table where he did most of his deliberating.  With a gentle slap (as if to signify a “period”) he anchored it and then shuffled (no youngster, he) slowly back to the other end.  Then, leaning over the few pages of “beginnings” he looked up to his five trusted “assistants” who stood, sleeves rolled up and ready, in front of the towering mahogany shelves filled with
“legal opinion,” and gave the usual exhortation.  “Alright children, I want to get from here (he patted the first page with his slightly gnarled right hand) to there (using the uplifted index indicator of the same hand to point to the “conclusion”).  Then, as his helpers began pulling, and opening, and placing, he said (as he exited the room), “As usual, use the fourteenth amendment as the brick, and the 'commerce clause' as the mortar.  Goodnight, children.”  “Goodnight, Justice Feelgood.”

And so, supreme court justice, John Paul Stevens, will retire.  Nearly ninety, the judge will pass his gavel off to a younger jurist.  Thank you for your service.

Okay, enough of the niceties.  Reality check: at the end of the day our current president, after feathering the emptying supreme court nest with layers of lofty legalese; at the end of the day he will place a pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, pro-big government liberal, such as himself, in the seat of power. Unfortunately for all of us, this individual, once in place, will take on the attributes of a sovereign; that is, unelected, perpetual, and often…a royal pain in the rear.  Just another unintended consequence from those who voted for… “Hope and Change.”

This would be a good time to view again the silly song, “The American Kings,” listed and linked, at left.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Saturday, April 10, 2010

The other "Joe"

(by R.P.Edwards)

Second banana
Number 2
In the shadow
Of you know who
Silver haired
Words of blue
“Did he really say that?”
“Yes, it’s true”
Picked for balance
In '08
Old and steady
Beside the “great”
 But so much more
Than seasoned years
He brings a banquet
To hungry ears

I suppose it’s because I’m a political mix, a mutt, a mishmash; a hybrid, a hyphenated halfblood; in other words…I’m a union guy with conservative tendencies.  Anyway, I get correspondence from both sides of the isle and, although I tilt decidedly right (in most areas) every now and then I’ll open up the mail that materializes on the left side of the screen. 

A day or so ago, just such a letter showed up.  It was from my friend, Vice President Joe Biden, and he had a simple request: pump up the recently passed healthcare legislation. Here’s a few tidbits:

Your senators, First Last and First Last, took that tough stand when they supported health reform. Now, we need to provide a line of defense money can't buy: the voices of real constituents speaking out and showing their support...

Special interests know that in the coming months, all their lies about reform will be proven false. But that won't stop them from inventing new ones and spreading attack ads...

It's just the first step, but one letter from a constituent is worth a hundred paid advertisements.

Along with the words came a nifty link whereby I could pen a few choice words and then, with the push of a button, send my rah-rah to all the local papers, at one time.  Ah, technology.

Well, since I think the recently crammed bill (as well intentioned as it is) will do much more harm than good, I won’t be endorsing it any time soon.  But, I do appreciate the thought, and I’ll certainly be wary of “all their lies” from the other side.  In the meantime, I hope to receive a message from another Joe.  A gent known as, “Joe the plumber.”

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Their Goal

Their Goal
(by R.P.Edwards)

My ultimate goal
Is your defeat
To leave you helpless
Beneath my feet
To stop your meddling
To stop your way
To stop your very heart…someday
Yes, my ultimate goal
Is that the eagle…die
To never rise
And vex…my sky
To keep away
While I do my will
To conquer, enslave, to own…and kill
I’ll shake your hand
I’ll play your game
I’ll nod my head
I’ll sign my name
But my ultimate goal
Is your defeat
And clueless you
Makes it doubly…sweet

Smiling, the two world leaders apply pens and personalities to the document that promises a substantial reduction in nuclear warheads, and delivery systems.  President Barack Obama, and Russian President Dmitry Medvedev, in the opulent surroundings of Prague Castle, after ardent negotiations…have made the world a safer, friendlier, place.  Humbug!

A question:  Where would we be without dreamers?  Where would we be without actors and academics and their aspiring acolytes, who enchant us with their “stories” of utopian bliss?  Where would we be without their hopeful visions of peace and prosperity being brought to fruition by these representatives of the ready; empowered by the eager; commissioned by…the confused.  Where would we be?  Safer.  Much safer.

You know, it’s one thing to mistakenly elect those who will tax us, unemploy us, bankrupt us, reeducate us.  And it’s another thing to make our nation more vulnerable to attack.  To naively drop our defenses in hopes that the other guys will play fair.  To believe our “good example” will somehow pave the way for the wayward worldlings to follow.  To show them the advantage…of  niceness. 

Listen, in this very dangerous world; in this time when “first strike” is all they need; in this day when destruction is measured in seconds, not days, months, or years; we need leaders that understand that you always, always! --in order to survive-- you must always deal from a position of strength.  For, when the scale finally tips (and it will), when the advantage is finally gained (and it’s headed that way), the next pact will not be signed in a fairytale castle but, rather, in the devastated remains…of whatever’s left. 

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

The Step

The step
(by R.P.Edwards)

Mountain high
With jagged peak
Or lifting words
Where none will speak
Or going forth
Through promised pain
The conquerors…are all the same
Their tasks, their goals, their deeds, their win
They all spring forth
Where hopes begin
That simple place
The step…so clear
To choose, to conquer

It’s all relative.  The personal conquering of…whatever.  There is a decision…a place where desire, or need, or desperate necessity…pushes you past the barriers, the chains, the shackles, the fetters… of fear and doubt.  It’s a vulnerable place.  Where potential injury (in its various forms) goes from possible to probable…to certain.  And there is a conquering, because the goal, the focus, the objective…is all that moves you.  Moves you to a place…beyond yourself.

I saw a little of that this week when my youngest boy learned to ride his bike.  A while back he had the desire well enough, but some rather hard falls curtailed his enthusiasm considerably.  Indeed, he associated the task…with pain.  And, my manly exhortations weren’t quite enough (not for this one anyway [funny how each kid is different]) to get him back on.   However, over time (a considerable amount) he internally wrestled with the thing until…there was a conquering.  The result? Now he’s a two-wheelin’ bloke.

And I think of our nation.  I think of our grand republic.  Birthed of patriot’s blood…and preserved through the same.  And I think of the efforts of a few, an isolated elite who are trying so desperately …to turn us into something else.  Something foreign.  And I think of we--the many, the majority--who have been comfortable and complacent, coasting on the weakening wave of past generations sacrifice.  And I wonder, if, with the very soul of our America at stake; I wonder if “we” will push past the pain; push past the doubters, and distorters, and deceivers; push past the revisionists and revilers and rogues; push past our very selfish selves…to lay hold, once again, of the words, and the meaning behind the words… “We hold these truths to be self evident.”  Yes, I wonder if there is a “conqueror” …in us.  For if there is not.  All…is lost.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

A question to skeptics

For the skeptics
(by R.P.Edwards)

If the resurrection’s false
Then all “He” taught is too
The promise of eternal life
A fairytale…for fools
But here’s a question for the skeptics
Who have learned of how “they” died
Would they suffer for a liar?
Or the man…they saw…arise

Peter, crucified upside-down.  James, beheaded.  Thomas, lanced and burned.  Matthew, axed to death.  Simon, crucified.  Matthias, stoned and beheaded.  Bartholomew, flayed and crucified. 

Eye witnesses.  Those who had actually walked with Jesus.  Those who saw Him…die, and rise again. The traditional accounts of “their” deaths begs the question; would they suffer so…for a liar?  Granted, people will latch on to all kinds of beliefs and undergo extreme hardship for an intangible that is only concrete…in their own minds.  But these; they were with Him; they saw the thousands fed, and healed, and delivered.  And they heard His assertion of a resurrection.  Would they really be willing to go and preach a gospel of forgiveness through the blood of the cross; a gospel that invited ridicule and injury and death…if Jesus’ final proof…was no proof at all?

The obvious answer is “no.“ But, even as I write I perceive there are skeptics among us who will rally their many arguments against this, and any other so-called “evidence” that there ever was a God whose great love for us took shape in the form of a babe, who then grew and went on to preach the truth, only to die a horrible death; and then, as an ultimate proof of divinity, was raised three days later.  But, though they cleverly try to deflect every advance, one argument cannot be countered; that of the personal testimony.  You see, I know the carpenter exists.  Long ago I learned of his love, and it wooed me, and I invited Him into my troubled, repentant heart.  And I know; I know! there was an entering, a cleansing, an embracing, a fellowshipping. I know there was a darkness; and now there is light.  I know there was a tearful before, and now there is a joyful after.  And, “knowing” all this, I can imagine why these first century believers (and many more since and currently) welcomed the threatenings of death…to share a message…of true life.

So, to those who know Him; Happy Resurrection Day!  And to the skeptics, some gentle advice: if you will simply pause long enough to listen, you may very well hear Him knocking…at your hearts door.  A simple beginning might be, "Lord, if you're me."

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Lincoln's Last Day

Good Friday
(by R.P.Edwards)

Willing lamb
Manifested God…and man
Partaker of the sinful brew
All unholy me…and you
And lifted high our shame he holds
As death envelopes
This way, this door, the Father’s wrath 

Through Jesus’ blood
The only…path

There was a deserter; a nameless someone who had forsaken his vow, his promise, his sacred oath to defend the Union and obey its representatives; to fight, and if need be…die.  Well, for whatever reason…he fled.  And the penalty for his “treason”…death.  However, before the noose, or the lead ball, there was one who could change his destiny.  There was one who had the power, the authority…to pardon.  And, on Good Friday, one hundred and forty-five years ago…pardon was given.  And, as Mr. Lincoln signed the document that gave this young man another chance, he was reputed to say,  "Well, I think the boy can do us more good above ground than underground."  Eight hours later, the one who stayed the marksman‘s blast, received a fatal bullet himself.

It’s Good Friday and, as I pondered an offering for today I came across the historical tidbit mentioned above.  Imagine, the Great Emancipator, killed on the anniversary of the day the Heavenly Emancipator bought “our” pardon by receiving the due penalty for our sin…Death.  Yes, in the grisly process of physical crucifixion, with the infinite adding of every sin of humankind, the spotless, pure, holy, Son of God, expressed the Father’s incredible love for us, by receiving “our” punishment…and making a way back to fellowship where none was humanly possible.  So…to those who know the reality of this pardon…it’s a time to give thanks.  And to those who wonder…a listening ear is waiting to receive your cry.

Following is a link to the site that tells of Lincoln’s last day.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.

Thursday, April 1, 2010

April Fool?

April Fools
(by R.P.Edwards)

Plastic wrap and toilet seats
Sticky tape to grab your feet
These, and other tricky tools
All appear…on April Fools
Twisted facts, or outright lies
Spoken, bring a mournful sigh
Justified, though light…or cruel
By simply saying… “April Fool!”
Yes, jokers, jivers, have your way
This, once a year
Your pranks to play
But know, tomorrow
Different rules
We’ll have no place…
For April Fools

A rather long section of plastic wrap, stretched out on the carpet in front of the bathroom door.  Hunched over it, my second son, scissors in hand.  A minute later, between he and I (a two man job) we had taped the nearly-invisible barrier across the doorway that led to “the girls room.” 

April Fools; I probably would have forgotten, save my son’s antics.  April Fools; it’s a time for lighthearted pranks and misleading mutterings.  A day that usually passes without notice, unless you have a “believer” in the house.  We have one and, years ago, we had to actually ban him from setting booby traps in our bedroom while we slept.  By-the-way, along with the “plastic wall” bit, he also did the classic “cover the pot.”  And--in true professional fashion--he fleshed out the slogan for Ronco’s Rotissrie… “Set it…and forget it.”  Real gags…are better with age.

Speaking of which: Here’s a true account I found amusing (although I haven’t attempted it, nor do I officially endorse it.)  Years ago, an older acquaintance (respectable, but not beyond a little mischief) became annoyed at one of those car owners who are so protective of their shiny ride, that they take up “two” parking spaces in order that we commoners don’t ding their “thing.”  Anyway, this older gent scribbled a note, placed it beneath a windshield wiper, and then proceeded to occupy a distant observation post.  Before long the owner, after reading the message, could be seen circling said ride like a hapless hound chasing its tail.  What was on the paper?  “Sorry about the scratch.”

As for my son’s doings:  It turns out the siblings (aided by their mother) were onto him.  All tricks…failed.  So, obviously, the solution is:  pick another day.

That’s what I think.  How about you?  Click comments below…and say.