Hope Finds Strength

I was talking to one of our street guys the other week. He was selling ‘Edmonton Street News’ outside of the Farmer’s Market off Whyte Ave. Because ESN is hosting “A Night of Poetry, Dance and Magic” this Friday evening, I asked him if he was going. He said that he was definitely going. Because my wife Debbie and I will be representing Hope Mission and sponsoring one of the poetry prizes, I asked him if he knew about the poetry contest. He said he certainly did and quickly informed me that he was one of the poets. Admittedly, he wouldn’t have been my first choice in a spot-the-poet-lineup. But I should know enough not to make these interior judgments. As you may know, people from the street often surprise.

I had a sense he wanted to tell me about his poetry and I had to make a conscious effort not to inquire, in fact I steered our conversation away from the subject. That’s because I knew that Linda Dumont, ESN editor, would be sending me a number of poems–sans author’s names of course–and I supposed his would be among them.

I received the package of poems last week. There are seven. I am to choose a first and second place winner. And now I’m in thick because every poem is very good. Stirring, emotive and well crafted, and almost always with spiritual reference or at least an allusion to things transcendent and divine. A telling thing in itself.

So, with perhaps more to come…here’s a sample: (The name of the poet will be published as soon as I find that out.)

Hope Finds Strength

Wondering, wandering

where to go, what to do

Shivering, quivering

in cold December blue

Where to charge, what to change

where all the questions be

Finding how to disengage

from fears, to set me free

My eyes swell from weeping

my knees bleed, face hapless

My heart aches and wanting

to ease my helplessness

‘til one day I saw light

and the sun came flashing

Air embraced me so tight

amid brewing lightning

I found myself singing

and spirit soaring high

Lo! Hope I find resting

in God, the Lord most high

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