Caesarea Philippi

Start in Caesarea Philippi

twenty mile walk from Capernum

take the Roman road

to the Greek god Pan

beautiful site

at the foot of Mt Hermon

source of the Jordan River

the Cave of Pan

enshrined

where Jesus told his disciples

that he would die

& live again

Who do you say I am?

& Peter exclaimed

Son of God!

& with this revelation

the church was built

here on the crags

of Caesarea Philippi

Caesarea Philippi

Death’s Knock

Last night there were knocks

on a door which woke me up

wondering if this

was deliberate knocking on my door

maybe from the homeless people

in the woods next door or someone else

who needed me in the middle

of the night and without pajamas

I left the bed to have a look

& then remembered I was naked

with a fear that someone

could have been looking in at me

standing there oblivious to the fact

that death’s knock had come

to the neighbor in the house

west of me as I went back to sleep

_____________________

dVerse prompt on a one sentence poem containing perhaps an embarrassing experience and incorporating the end of civilization

Death’s Knock

Beginning

The last time I saw Eduardo was at Hoxie’s funeral. It was a sad affair as he was a young man gone too soon. Eduardo had once cried as he told me his testimony. Not Hoxie’s testimony but his own. Hoxie’s I never heard. Now we were sitting together at a funeral and he doesn’t speak. He had left the church about a year ago.

Hoxie, however, died in the church. Not hypothetically, but literally, died in the church. He was teaching Sunday school and collapsed on the floor. Nobody knew CPR. I was backsliding that day or else I would have been there. I heard later that there was nothing anyone could do, not even prayer— it was an aneurism.

There was a lot of guilt mixed in with sorrow that perhaps had I been there that I could have saved Hoxie’s life. I had never saved anyone except a Red Cross CPR mannequin. Good enough to blow into the fake lungs and press down the chest to keep the nonexistent blood flowing. I thought at the time that had I been there, had I been in line physically and spiritually that Hoxie would have lived!  The church people told me there was nothing anyone could have done.  I was beginning to believe them.

have faith in small things

a snowflake falling on tongue

can quench more than thirst

_________________

dVerse prompt on beginnings — this is the start of a story I am telling.

Beginning

Burial Urns

The tomb urn is big enough to hold a body. (It is another way to bury the dead in ancient Sicily. We see them in the archeological museum.) I am climbing over an adult-sized one trying not to break it. When I get to the top, the urn falls forward and moves down a small hill. It does not break so my relief is great. A girl comes to help me to move it upright and to set it in a new place. I know this dream is about death. How the burying of the dead has changed since the beginning. Now I can choose my burial in an ecopod much like the urns of Sicily. I will know the falling of the vessel that takes me away. That it is there ready to receive me.

Burial Urns

Togetherness

It was the end of summer.  The family had spent a few weeks in Iowa where my mother was now in hospice because of cancer.  Both grandchildren spent time at her bedside and played with cousins, saw  aunts and uncles and enjoyed the rare occasion of the whole family being together.

My younger sister would be the nurse.  She had the training.  I was worthless and returned home so the children could start school.  In a few days I got the call.  I booked a ticket to leave the next day.  The children wanted to know why I was going again, since I had just been there.

When your mother dies, you go there.

Togetherness

I Saw My Mother Dying

I saw my mother dying

Can recognize when someone is about to give up life

“That’s life” an old woman says at the library when the copy machine won’t copy

“That’s death” I say to myself

in between is limbo

Her strong bones frail now

meds keep her under

she wants more

skin pocked with injections

she doesn’t want to know me

what’s the point

she is dying

it can happen to anyone

at anytime

you don’t have to be old to die

I Saw My Mother Dying