Catch His Eye (Spenserian Stanza)

Poem-a-Day Challenge #16 (Two for Tuesday): Catch Poem or Release Poem

You don’t have to wonder if you’ll catch his eye;
Forget makeup; forget the fancy clothes.
There’s no need to fuss; there’s no need to try
To get or keep his attention; he knows
Precisely who you are, and even though
He bears no obligation to notice you
He sets his affection on you and throws
Off hindrances to believing he’s true
And destroys your fears that his love will ever cool.



What is a Spenserian Stanza?

Movement (Spenserian Stanza)

Striking with bare hands or blunt objects,
The lung-gales laying low both reeds and trees––
The synchrony of limbs for one subject
Battle voices lifted in harmony.
Plans and maps of movements lay out the scene,
When and how and where and whom are able.
Percussion, rhythm made by moving feet.
Orchestration of all: incomparable.
Melody and movement are inseparable.


What is a Spenserian Stanza?

Scales (Spenserian Stanza)

Appoint an incredulous Damascene
To pray for sight for these sore eyes of mine,
For the scaly cataracts once deemed
To fall by prayer and fasting siege my eyes
Anew; they blur and fade where men ape pines.
Muddy thy hands to abrade this calloused
Face with my creation’s stuff, that I find
My time’s path littered with discarded dust
From rotting scales that fall each time again I trust.


What is a Spenserian Stanza?

Digging Out of a Hole (Spenserian Stanza)


Jesus arrives not with a ladder for us to climb out of creation, but a shovel He’ll use to dig up the wicked root of our sin within creation. And in its place, He’ll plant the sacrificial love of God, burying His own body like a seed deep in the death of our world, cracked open to bring new life rising up from creation’s broken heart.

— Joshua Ryan Butler, The Pursuing God, 209.

We look up at the small blue circle there,
The roof of our self-excavated hole,
And wonder how or if we’ll breathe the air
Beyond this dirt-dacha of moping moles.
Rescue comes, but hope is once seen then stole’,
For a shovel and no ladder descends
And the blue above seems as black as coal.
But Rescue digs, His arms and back bend
Replacing a root with Self—vine-seed—out to wend.

The germinating seed sends shoots skyward;
Among its leaves we’re grafted and brought out
Of dirt-dark to blue-sky-light—free—upward,
Transforming grief into triumphant shout
The hole we dug became the Victor’s rout
Over the rank filth we once wallowed in
And the blue roof turns ashen with rain clouds
Whose drops fall on us, all the dirt is cleansed
By Rescue’s joy whose healthy sunshine will not end.


Door’s Always Open (Spenserian Stanza)


The Yankee catcher once pointedly quipped,
“It’s so crowded no one goes anymore.”
You tried to go home once, but couldn’t slip
Past all the pressing crowd; neither could four
Men bearing their precious burden: sin-sore,
Immobile brother seeking grace-release.
They dug a hole, unroofed the roof—new door!—
And heard the Savior say, “Go now in peace!
My door and roof open, come often as you please!”


In the Details (Spenserian Stanza)

Divinity is in the details, no
Place for the Devil to work therein.
Jesus’ domain is “It happened just so”;
The Devil finds no room to work within.
The Sovereign King, unstained by any sin,
Delights, decrees, accomplishes His will.
By mercy, He becomes the sinner’s friend,
Ordaining all the means that will fulfill
His perfect KIngdom; so, fearful heart: Peace, be still.


Pass By (Spenserian Stanza)

“The glory of Your face let me behold!”
Atop Mount Sinai Moses made his plea;
His faithfulness to Yahweh made him bold,
But “Yes” to him was not Yahweh’s decree.
Before His face is no place of safety.
But “Yes” in diff’rent form did Moses hear:
His back as He passed by He let him see
His name, “I AM,” proclaimed as He drew near
Holy Shekinah shining forth both bright and clear.

Five thousand men and wives and children, too
With bellies full of borrowed fish and bread
Denied the chance to force Jesus to rule
He sent the Twelve across the lake instead.
While Jesus prayed, they became filled with dread;
A storm assailed the boat; the waves were high.
He was no midnight ghost, no scene misread,
But Jesus intended to pass them by.
I AM got in, said, “Fear not; it is I.”