BECAUSE HE LOVES US

By Lisa Huddleston

What if,

(Because He loves us so much)

When we lie in our beds

(Or wherever we lie)

One breath from death and still in our sins

He gives us one last glimpse of heaven

Like Michelangelo’s sky only better

What if we gasp

“Oh! I see!”

Does He still then

At that very last breath

Stamp “SAVED” beside our names?

A Pandemic Christmas or The Runaway Gramma

By Lisa Huddleston

It was weeks before Christmas

And all through the land, 

Pandemic was raging

And little was grand.

But here on HudFarm

The goats and the ducks

The chickens and donkeys

Did not give a buck.

They had all the hay

That they wanted to eat,

And Doodaddy came every morning

With treats.

The great grandmas were saddened

Because of the change,

But we all did our best to

Make things feel the same.

The fifth generation who’d built on the land 

that had been in the family for centuries of days

Were doing their all to stay safe and not  stray.

But LiLi was having a terrible struggle

To fill all their stockings

With bangles and baubles!

One day she declared, “I’ve had just enough.

I’m hitting the road. This pandemic’s too tough.”

She packed up a bag, threw it over her shoulder,

Stuffed in a scarf cause the day had turned colder. 

Then head down the road she did in a hurry

With a huff and a puff and a gravel dust flurry.

When little than yonder from home she arrived

She noticed a funny scritch scratch at her sides.

Turning her head to the left and the right 

She gasped to see chickens had join in her flight.

“Now what will I do?” LiLi questioned herself.

“I’d meant to be solo, but this is a mess. 

I guess chickens can fend pretty well for themselves.”

And down the back roads LiLi fled from the rest.

“Now what?” LiLi flustered as to her surprise

Two donkeys appeared with their big loving eyes.

“It’s Essie and Latte. Now what will I do?”

But LiLi was stubborn and picked up her shoes.

“Oh my!” LiLi cried when along came the goats.

Blaise first, Bert, then Ernie, and Lil Buddy, the poke.

She knew that they loved her, and that she loved them. 

But how could she lead this whole mess from their pens!

Then off in the distance there came a sweet cry.

“It’s Quinnie,” she said. “There’s no way I can fly!”

Now turning around wasn’t easy to do with 12 chickens,

2 donkeys, 4 goats—quite a zoo.

But it was the right thing. She knew all along. 

And here came 2 cats and 3 dogs to prove she’d been wrong.

So back to the farmhouse, sweet smells, and bright lights.

Merry Covid Christmas to all and to all a good night.

EMPTY FOR EASTER

By Lisa Huddleston

Birth-days

Birthdays

Graduations

Anniversaries

Gathering with friends to discuss books, to knit, to pray, to sing

Family reunions

Funerals and grieving together and alone

Will it ever be normal again?

Will we be able to hug each other and hold hands?

How many links will be missing?

Whose faces will we miss?

But God split the seas when armies followed.

He sent the manna to those who starved.

He saw our loneliness and came to be One of us.

And He canceled our burdens at the cross.

Death is dead.

Neither famine nor war nor virus nor despair; He will hold us in strong arms and nothing will tear us apart.

Death is dead, and Jesus Lives.

He is risen. He is risen indeed!

And the tomb is empty for Easter.

Eight Months Young

Wrapped in a black plastic bag

Like so much trash

Sweet Peanut was carried to the necropsy lab

But he was not trash

He was tender hearted

And loved to be loved

He pressed his knobby forehead into my palm

And delighted in a rough and tumbly rub

My knotty knuckles rattling across his poled knobs

As long as I pet him he stayed

Death came too soon but his sweet soul will be remembered

I only wish I pet him longer

HARD TO BREATHE

By Lisa Huddleston

Where do the pieces of a broken heart go?

Do they swim through arteries or evaporate through pores?

One way is kept out of sight but lives forever within

The other is expelled and breathed into the vacant sky

Although I choose to let them go, some jagged shards remain

Piercing my lungs and leaving me gasping for air

ASHES TO ASHES

By Lisa Huddleston

Where have all the fall flowers gone,

Where are the mounds of oranges and reds,

The musty wet piles that covered our heads,

From which we erupted then remade our beds,

Where are the colors today?

 

I used to say that fall showed us how beautiful dying could be,

But now I fear I’m wrong.

This year the leaves drop without color,

Ashy gray skirts lie around empty trunks,

No beauty to the dying,

Just ashes to ashes and dust to dust.

Where have all the flowers gone?

PNEUMA

 

 

 

By Lisa Huddleston

 

Lying on the space of rubber mat

Feet to the left and to the right

Both hands open at my sides

 

I breathe in His name

Keeper of my soul

Hold and absorb

He is the keeper of my soul

He does not need my help

 

Breathing out in prayer

I exhale

Help me to let go

 

Filling the the mercy seat between my cherubim hands and feet

 

Keeper of my soul

Help me to let go

Keeper of my soul

Help me to let go

 

Breathing in the physics of his name

Exhaling the disease of my lies

Treatments given by the Great Physician

 

Clear pneuma, no monia

Healthy breath, spirit, and soul

 

Namaste

TALK ABOUT SUFFERING HERE BELOW …

By Lisa Huddleston

And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you. (1 Peter 5:10)

Relationships can be hard. Truth.

And it can be especially hard when a relationship has trouble, and you find yourself with the inability to do anything about what’s causing the difficulty. At a time like this, I am thankful to have a Heavenly Father who knows my heart, sees my tears, and responds to my hurt with encouragement and good promises on which I can rest my weary head.

As you know, Chuck and I live on a fifth-generation family farm in Middle Tennessee with our mothers, cattle, cats, dogs, goats, ducks, and chickens. Besides our moms, other human family is often here as well, and we all benefit from the lessons that surround us in this nurturing place.

In the past few weeks, we have introduced 2 new goats and 4 new chickens to the menagerie. And although you often hear that “birds of a feather flock together,” it can take time for peace to be restored when newbies arrive. The lil’ girls are still running to hide from the mean old biddies who are used to ruling the roost, and the lil’ fellas in the goat field are taking a lot of pushing around from the bossy older guy they are now living with. Relationships can be rough.

Naturally, Chuck and I do our best to smooth the ruffled feathers when we are there, but the truth is that all we and the newbies can do is give it time and let the pecking order fall into place. As we know from bringing in others in the past, cats and dogs will find their own ways, and the same is true for new chickens and new goats. Time will do its good work. We can only wait.

I don’t know about you, but I find waiting to be one of the hardest things to do (or NOT do). I want to fix relationships that are broken. I holler at Blaise when he head butts the boys, and I run to rescue the lil’ girls when I hear squawking and see feathers fly. Do Blaise and the big girls care what I do? Heck no!

And the same is sometimes true for humans. When I see difficulties for others or especially when I feel that I am on the business side of a head butt, it is nearly impossible for me to sit down and wait for God to do his work. But He is reminding me that He is on the job, and I can trust Him even with the most heartrending relationship struggles. He will work all things together for good. He does hear my cries and see my tears. He will restore,  confirm, strengthen, and establish me. I have not been forgotten nor do I need to defend myself. At the proper time, He will exalt me from this humbling, and I can safely and confidently cast my cares on Him.

Thank you, Father, for squawking hens, for pushy goats, for words that salve a broken heart, and for your never-ending faithfulness.

So shall it be. Amen.