Between the Trees

image by Rebekah Choat

image by Rebekah Choat

Genesis 2: 8-9:  The LORD God planted a garden eastward in Eden,
and there He put the man whom He had formed. And out of the ground
the LORD God made every tree grow that is pleasant to the sight and
good for food. The tree of life was also in the midst of the garden, and
the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.

Revelation 22: 1-2:  And he showed me a pure river of water of life,
clear as crystal, proceeding from the throne of God and of the Lamb.
In the middle of its street and on either side of the river was the tree
of life, which bore twelve fruits, each tree yielding its fruit every month.
And the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations.

 

Trees, at the beginning of life as we know it, and at what we call the end of life as we know it – or, we could say, the beginning of life as we shall know it even as we are known. Between them, this long stretch of time, some of which is now ours – the days of living between the trees.

 

A Better Resurrection by Christina Rossetti

I have no wit, no words, no tears;
My heart within me like a stone
Is numbed too much for hopes or fears;
Look right, look left, I dwell alone;
I lift mine eyes, but dimmed with grief
No everlasting hills I see;
My life is in the falling leaf:
O Jesus, quicken me.

My life is like a faded leaf,
My harvest dwindled to a husk:
Truly my life is void and brief
And tedious in the barren dusk;
My life is like a frozen thing,
No bud or greenness can I see:
Yet rise it shall — the sap of spring;
O Jesus, rise in me.

My life is like a broken bowl,
A broken bowl that cannot hold
One drop of water for my soul
Or cordial in the searching cold;
Cast in the fire the perished thing;
Melt and remould it, till it be
A royal cup for Him, my King:
O Jesus, drink of me.

~ Christina Rossetti

 

Out of the Sea

Small as a world, this smooth round stone
you gave to me, and large as alone,
and grey as the sea it rolled in from,
hurled on the shore to be brought home.

Within its sphere are foam and sky
and bite of salt and seagull’s cry
and height of wave and stretch of sand,
and here I hold it in my hand.

It sings a song of tideswept stars
and deeps where untold wonders are.
It keeps the memory of the wind
and brings me whispers of a friend.

I can’t be lost — it anchors me,
this smooth round stone out of the sea.

~ Rebekah Choat

 

Garden Charm

image by Rebekah Choat

image by Rebekah Choat

Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint,
Sweetest of herbs in my garden close,
Gracing the morning with their mingled scent,
Lavender, rosemary,marjoram, mint.

Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint,
Holiness, purity, safety and peace,
Comfort, remembrance, healing, content,
Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint.

Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint,
Happiness, respite from sorrow, heart’s ease,
Brightness and deep breath and friendly intent,
Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint.

Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint,
Sweetest of herbs in my garden close,
Gracing the morning with their mingled scent,
Lavender, rosemary, marjoram, mint.

~ Rebekah Choat

This day in history

This time yesterday –
or twenty-four years ago,
it might have been –
the whole world –
or maybe it was just my bed –
heaved and convulsed and spun round,
madly methodically crushing me.

After eternity –
or a few hours, perhaps –
the universe –
or my room, one or the other –
stood solid again, though shaken,
and I was not destroyed.

~ Rebekah Choat