Tuesday, May 19, 2015

A Song in the Night

A memoriam to Horatio Spafford decorated with lilies of the fields from the purlieu of Jerusalem where he founded the American Colony.

It Is Well With My Soul

When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to know,
It is well, it is well, with my soul.

It is well, (it is well),
With my soul, (with my soul)
It is well, it is well, with my soul.
Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,

Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul.
My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!

My sin, not in part but the whole,
Is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
Praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
For me, be it Christ, be it Christ hence to live:

If Jordan above me shall roll,
No pang shall be mine, for in death as in life,
Thou wilt whisper Thy peace to my soul.
But Lord, 'tis for Thee, for Thy coming we wait,

The sky, not the grave, is our goal;
Oh, trump of the angel! Oh, voice of the Lord!
Blessed hope, blessed rest of my soul.
And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,

The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
A song in the night, oh my soul!

Horatio Spafford, 1873

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Saturday, April 25, 2015

To my Children’s Mother

As the rain fell long into the night,
Could not but think of another spring night,
A first date and music and singing.
Of lacing up your petite feet into your skates.
And gliding across the floor holding your hand, it was paradise.
And later walking and talking, hand in hand together.
Your lips a scarlet thread and your words
More comely than ever I heard.
And at your door I stood mesmerized
Looking into your sea blue eyes, doves' eyes.
And then our first kiss.
You ravished my heart that night!
But why over the years have I so often forgotten?
O my dove, my love, my bride, and my life.
Happy Birthday my fair one.

“For behold, the winter is past, The rain is over, it is gone:
The flowers appear on the earth; The time of singing is come,
And the voice of the turtle-dove is heard in our land” (Song 2:11-12).

Thursday, January 29, 2015

"Bon Voyage Baby Nova"

Quite the Super Nova

Up, up and away in a beautiful balloon, 
And as la stately Parisian tower pierces the clouds above, 
A little bird poses on a fountain mirroring the azure sky.

As la vintage suitcase rests on a mottled pastel background, 
With chemise, bonnet, et accessoires neatly spread under a muted parasol, 
A serendipitous Vespa circumnavigates la Tour Eiffel.

But petit Nova her passeport has forgotten!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

A Day of Honor

An evening some years ago I was reading letters to my father, old letters my mother had written. His eyes brightened as he recognized her voice in each one. Then as I reached for another from among the tightly packed envelopes, I found this coarse piece of tablet paper wedged between. As I read, his eyes riveted on the long lost remembrance, and as mine questioned, he began the story:

That evening, Company M, 128th Infantry, 32D was ordered to gather together their few archaic implements of war, strip, and toss their fatigues into vats of green dye. And as they were jettisoning every possession, my father found a scrap of paper and quickly scribbled one last letter, dripping dye as the shirt on his back continued to dry. Then as planes were revving in the predawn mist and he was waiting in line, a guy in his company broke the silence: “'Sweet Tooth,’ tell us somethin’ funny.” My father sternly elucidated “This is not funny!” as they went into the night....

The day of death is of greater honor than the day of one's birth (cf. Ecclesiastes 7:1), today was the day of my father’s death, 70 years after that fateful night.

U.S. Army Signal Corps photo
An Australian sentry guards an American Boeing B-17 in the early morning as soldiers of the 128TH Infantry, 32D Division, wait in the distance to board planes for Port Moresby at Amberly Field, Ipswich, Australia, on 18 September, 1942.


Company E, 126th and Company M, 128th were the very first U.S. units to be to be airborne into combat.1As part of the 32D ‘Red Arrow’ Infantry Division, they initiated the Division’s unenviable record of more days in combat than any other U.S. division during World War II.1 During the Papuan Campaign they also had the unenviable distinction of a casualty count that exceeded the division's entire battle strength.1 But in doing so they wrote first chapter in the book of jungle warfare for all who would follow:
“The 32D Division, during this difficult time at Buna, was writing the book for combat against the Japanese in the jungles of the Pacific with their sweat and blood. All of the Pacific battles yet to come were able to benefit from the lessons learned by the 32D Division at Buna, and also the Marines and Army Infantry concurrently fighting at Guadalcanal.”1
1Highlights of the 32D ‘Red Arrow’ Infantry Division during World War II
2The32D Infantry Division in World War II The ‘Red Arrow’ Papuan Campaign - The Battle of Buna