heartstrings

my mind is a hollow mess of a thousand echoes
bouncing off the walls of my heart
they whisper to me in loud voices
preying on labile feelings and desires

my gaze rests upon glitters and sparkles
with eyes like lust, I stare
coveting the things I cannot have
and the days long gone

this flesh made from clay
craves to be admired and adorned
it needs trophies and applause
it delights in vain glory

lIke the strings of a newly wound guitar
you pluck gently yet firmly
producing a melody so perfect it hurts
you hold out Your hand for a dance
my feet stay glued, tired from the journey of mistakes past

your eyes search mine gently,
I hear the words Your mouth need not speak,
“trust, put your hand in Mine, dance”
I see your eyes swim with tears
your hand is still held out
your body poised to dance with me

you strip me away gently
with hands like love
removing the debris upon my spirit
breathing me to life
you quiet my will firmly
with words like fire
setting me ablaze
breaking me to stillness

Life!

Hi guys! this is a short story written by my lovely sister and upcoming writer, Gbenga Oti. Enjoy! She would appreciate your kind thoughts too, there just might be a sequel.
……
I had waited so long for the day when I would walk down the aisle, with my arms locked into my fathers’ and my eyes set on the man I love. Everything was going as planned, the venue was booked and invitations were sent out.
He travelled for a business meeting. The meeting was successful, I was speaking to him as he was about to board a bus back to Germany, all of a sudden the line went dead and his mobile phone was switched off. I found this very strange as he never switches off his phone, maybe his battery died. An hour later, my mind went into overdrive, flooding itself with multiple scenarios of what could have happened, none of which were good.
The days that followed were tortuous; it is commonly said that “it’s better for someone to die than go missing”, then I understood, you grieve everyday hoping that they will return. I couldn’t sleep, eat or concentrate on my work. I contacted the Embassy and the police in Sweden; I got the standard reply “we are working on it”, this was really frustrating. I could not just sit around and do nothing, what if he had been kidnapped, but why wasn’t anyone calling for a ransom, was he dead? but NO that cannot be. A week later, my phone rang, it was HIM, he said he would be back and the line went dead. He was alive, that was good enough for me.
Then again, two weeks of silence, I could not contact him. I began to worry again; at this point the date of our wedding had passed by, my dream wedding was in shambles, my man nowhere to be found.
A month later, the embassy finally responded, he was arrested for paying for a bus ticket for some men he had just met over lunch. These men were illegal immigrants (unknown to him), his story was verified. I was so happy all this was over, and he would be back by weekend.
Or so I thought…

Dear Father,

Today I am grateful for the life that you have given me.
There are times when I feel so far away from you,
My faith wavers and I forget who I am in you.
So I slip and fall from your tight embrace.

Every so often, my life is in disarray.
Today, I am sold out to you,
Tomorrow, my faith takes a plunge,
I often wonder how you can put up with my inconsistencies.

Each time I allow sin to drag me under,
The feelings are the same; those of shame, dejection and regret.
He whispers lies into my ears,
And drops a veil over my eyes,
Blinding me to the truth that
You will never leave me nor forsake me

Day after day,
the veil becomes clouded with more doubts than my feeble heart can take,
Somehow your voice breaks through my muddled mind and unplugs my ears,
Softening a heart so unwilling to believe how a God so perfect can love me.
Through the days when I stumble and fall,
You are there waiting, willing me to take your hand.
My mind cannot comprehend a love so perfect and I resist it because I do not understand it.

Every year, I resolve to have a better relationship with you,
A more stable one, devoid of failings.
By March, the euphoria of making it into the new year gradually evaporates,
My gratitude diminishes; old habits regain their appeal,
And become more important than trusting in a God whom I cannot see,
And whose love I barely comprehend.

By July, the void in my heart desires to be filled,
And so I try everything else but you,
Until there is nothing left but you
Then slowly but surely, I decide that the day has come to give you my life.
For a while, I can feel the change coursing through me.
They told me that singular act was the beginning of a new life.

Then the days turned into weeks,
And with the wind, the euphoria disappeared.
Now I realise that my walk with you is a journey of a lifetime.
Father, like Moses I thirst for an encounter with you.
One that will give me a clearer understanding of who You are.
Amidst the uncertainties that life brings, only one thing is sure,
Your perfect, immeasurable love for me.

Day by day, the world is turning against you,
And I struggle against the tides that threaten to drown me.
Teach me Your will and help me to receive your love;
Help me to serve you with all of my heart,
Hold me in your hands Father and never let me go.

Broken…the finale.

Writing this story has been a great learning experience for me and I wish that it didn’t have to end so soon. Enjoy!

Free as a bird,
To do as I please,
To soar like the eagle,
To overcome obstacles,
To be rid of the chains that hold me captive,
I long for freedom.

I buried Zee today, with Bernice by my side. She was my sister and my best friend for many years, and the only family that I had left. I’m grateful to Yahweh for the support of the man I had slowly begun to love who has made this loss so much easier to bear. The day Zee and I discovered this town seems like another time, another decade, a different age.


 

Simeon was going to let me go, I had cried out to Yahweh for help in my hunger and desperation for freedom. He had found love he said in the arms of another, one named Absa, a man he said. My hand-maiden would be the cover for his taste for unspeakable things never before heard of in Canaan but I could not let that happen so I whispered it into the ears of the land’s own gossipmonger. Jacob disowned him and Leah cursed him, all of Israel had something else to talk about now that my story had lost its flavour. I still thirsted for his blood even after my release from the farce that was our four month old marriage.
Everyone dies, I just sped things up a little for my husband, one as enraged and impulsive as he was deserved a death like no other, the kind that would give my daughter nightmares if she knew what I had done to her ‘uncle Simeon’.There was a time when I thought that life was easy, that I would be little Dinah forever, oh how I wish it were possible to turn back the hands of time and be her again.

Something was pulling me under, stealing my breath away I as I kept screaming for Yahweh to help me until my screams were drowned out to a feeble gasp for breath. I woke up in a cold sweat like I had been doing every night since I found that I was pregnant. I was the ex-wife of my dead brother, put in the family way by my dead rapist and disowned by my now dead Father.The judge of Israel had put a price on my head, so here I was on foot running for my life with my hand-maiden Zee who diagnosed my recent early morning illness as the first sign of an unwanted pregnancy.
We were living on fruits and the smoked remains of dead animals hunted by Zee and every pool of water in the never-ending forest was a cause for celebration. We slept on the bed provided very generously by the floor of the forest and the fire we made around us kept the wolves away but not the tiny little ants and bloodsucking mosquitoes.
Our journey lasted three whole months and we barely survived but we made it to the little town of Uz which we would make our new home, for my time to nest had come, even as I waited the birth of the creature whom I was sure to hate.

The people of Uz welcomed us with open arms, they were an hospitable people who served the Lord God of Israel. They knew us not, yet they offered us kindness like I have never before experienced even among my people. A man called Job helped us the most, he gathered all the young men in the land and asked them to build us a house. I was humbled in my spirit and the ice around my heart began to melt even as I begun to experience Yahweh’s love all over again.
My daughter came that winter, with Zee by my side, teaching and helping me to bring forth as so many women before me had, the pain was unbearable and is one that I never want to experience again, every push reminded me of the abomination that resulted in her formation and I relived every unholy thrust that Shechem had made inside of me.
I thought I would hate her but the minute I saw her, I knew she was the answer to a prayer that I didn’t even think He had heard. She was a perfect miracle and the good that came out of a bad situation and so I named her Bernice, ‘the one that brings victory’.

Someday, she would sit at my feet as I teach her the way of the Lord, and she would serve Yahweh with all her heart. I had so many dreams for her, and they would come true, this time they would.

The End.

As all great writers do, I’ll site my references for this story.
The Holy Bible; Gen 34
http://jwa.org/encyclopedia/article/dinah-midrash-and-aggadah
http://www.moshereiss.org/articles/12_family.htm

Dear Child,

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I love you.
I just wish you believed me.

Day after day, my heart breaks as you deny me.
Thoughts of me make you cringe as you question my existence,
I call to you, but you do not answer,
Your ears are shut to the sound of my voice,
Your heart cold as ice, unyielding as ever.

I knew you before you were formed,
I beamed at your conception,
I rejoiced at your birth.
I believed in you when no one else would,
Tended to your bruises,
Soothed your pain.

Everything that has happened to you,
Every blight in your past,
Every drought in your present,
Has happened for a reason only I can see,
Listen close, for my heart beats for you,
Your name is tattooed on the palm of my hand,
Your face etched forever in my memory.
I will not give up on you my child,
For no one can love you as much as I do.

I just need you to look past your hurt, and see what can still be.
I never promised that your life would be perfect,
Roses have thorns too, you see.
If you would just trust me and test me,
Only then will you see,
That I can give you peace.

I am your Father, and I love you like no one else can.