In Albania

In Albania

we visit the Jonathon Center

dance with the children

who are celebrating a birthday

This is the house where Mother Teresa’s mother

and sister lived during Communism

Mother Teresa was not allowed into the country

they said she was a spy

When Communism fall in Albania

Mother Teresa returned

put flowers of forgiveness on the grave

of the dictator and then went to her mother’s grave

When her mother was living

people would have coffee with her

they could not talk about God

there was no God in Albania


stories from Albania

In Albania

On a Thousand Hills

from Psalm 50


God said

every animal of the forest is mine

the cattle on a thousand hills

I know every bird in the mountains

insects in the fields are mine


While walking

Jesus looked beyond men

landscape freckled with many animals

sheep and cattle

were His




dVerse prompt for quadrille with the word freckle





On a Thousand Hills

Bird Behavior 

It is springtime. I have returned home from half year spent travelling. It is time to reclaim the house from the woodland creatures. A flicker comes every morning and drills at my corner of the building. Deer are in the garden. The robin comes as sure as Solomon’s Seal and pecks at my window.  

This robin sits on the sill, its head turned and one eye gazing in. All he can see is himself in the glass. He sees himself as.a reflection of another bird. Threatened somehow by its own glass-image, it pecks the vision, flies up, flies in and pecks again. What does that bird hold inside itself that is so tormenting that it repeats this over and over again?

Sometimes that robin scares me. I’ll be calming reading, entrenched in words and bam. The bird flies into the window again. Makes me jump, startled, annoyed. How can it be so tormented. To be so tormented by yourself that you rise up and keep hitting the hard cold reality of a window.

what nature is this

absorbed completely in self

far removed from God

Bird Behavior 

To God

I can’t come out today

I don’t know what to say

I would if I could

all the other prayers

seem so much better

I know you hear trillions of prayers

I am just one of çazillions 

help me to find a connection

I am lost in my procrastination 

Is it better to write you a letter


POV of the prayer

To God

King Saul and the Witch

an elegy for Saul

After the death of the prophet Samuel


(abandoned by God)

no visions in prophesy or dream

the kingdom snatched from his hand

with the Philistines about to attack

Saul went to the witch of Endor anyway

surely you are Saul who has come to kill me said the witch who recognized him even in disguise (it is hard to fool a witch)

Saul swore to his God (who had abandoned him) he would not kill the witch

She conjured the spirit of prophesy

raised Samuel out of the grave

sent the king into battle knowing of his death

and that of his son

all that remained to him

was death

King Saul and the Witch

Mark of the Tattoo

My son the tattoo artist

two delicate piercings on his face

no tattoos

soft brown hair

falls on his shoulder

where a geisha is painted

In such fine detail

the most detail he tells me

of all of his tattoos

this one in colors still brilliant

No branding here

no scarification

just pen and ink

a portrait now a poem

etched on skin

by tattoo artist

my next of kin

The newest one is on his palm

still healing

it is of aum

he talks of pain

of blood letting too

a religious experience for him

and now for you

he tells me of puja

of Ganesh

I see


mark of tattoo

Mark of the Tattoo