Moving out

Traveled across the state today, something I usually look forward to, the Indiana landscape typically a comfort to my soul.
But today the rolling grey sky
matched my melancholy.

We were headed to the university to move our freshman son out.

Wasn’t it just yesterday the sun shone bright as we
unloaded
his things, shoulder-to-shoulder
with other nervous freshmen and nostalgic parents
and carts full of
mini ‘fridges and shower caddies,
saucer chairs and backpacks,
hopes and dreams and an entire year
stretched out,
boundless,
before them?
What an odd, strange day.
What an unwanted, unexpected, and yes,
unprecedented
day.

Like the bare, brown trees, and the great sepia squares of sleeping fields
we sped by,
all the world feels
naked.
We filed in,
only one helper per student allowed
(after sanitizing our hands),
to the cold halls of the dorm.
How sterile it seemed as we packed and stacked
his room up.

Thirty minutes flat.

Hadn’t moving in taken an entire day?
Keys turned in.
Space as empty as when we first saw it and filled it.

All is not lost,
thanks
to computers and e-learning.
Two semesters will be completed, in spite of it all.

But how much this day feels like all the others
of late,
without choice,
with danger looming.

How labile my heart is, changing like the news
by the minute.
From Lamentations to Psalms,
from truth to fear,
from trust to doubt
and back again.
Spring always comes, like the Lord and His great mercies,

right?

Joy
and
the morning
and showers
and spring rain

they
always
come
again,

right?

I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living! Wait for the Lord;
be strong, and let your heart take courage;
wait for the Lord! ~Psalm 27:13-14

blessed

let it not be

thought that from the damage done

in youth rises the irreversible melancholy of despair

for the Lord is my rock

and my salvation

blessed is he who comes

and many are the angels who encamp

around the innocent who live

on and beyond the hard,

always toward the goal

of

peace

small

Strongholds are hard,

risk required

to break the generations

of shame declaring the healing worse

than the barbed wire chains of pride

encircling the light-bearers like hawks

searching for the small, burrow-ers

making their way among the vines and weeds

towards truth.