“For mourning robe the oil of gladness” (Isaiah 61: 3)

Robert Collins

“Cry out for joy and gladness” (Isaiah 12: 6)

Three Small Joys


Lucy dog, at the shuddering thunder,
slipping into Katrina’s and my bedroom
and laying her muzzle on the edge of the bed,
her nose (and breath, not a joy) letting me know
she is available for a pat, a scratch behind her ears,
the words “It’s okay, Lucy. It’s just thunder.”

Severin Hoin

Lynn or Robert opening the back door
to City Light Community Ministries
each morning before I can phone the kitchen
to say, “I am here.” How do they know?
A mystery I don’t want to solve.

Kelli Tungay

Mr. Battles (Wilbur to me) singing out,
“Hello, everyone,” at the front door of City Light
each MWF at noon, spreading his wings over us,
saying, “God bless you for what you do,”
and when, yesterday, tired and disgruntled,
I told Wilbur, “You think more of me
than I do of myself,” he laughed
his deep-joy laugh and said,
“Bob, you don’t know nothing ’bout how much
God and I know you and love you no matter,”
then laughed again.

Gia Oris

So these three scenes are my cry
“for joy and gladness,” all our cries
at this time of the Coronavirus, COVID-19
contagion, especially my cry for my friends
at City Light, for friends
from Hardin-Simmons University.

Noah Silliman

And Wilbur says God will forgive me
my mourning robe.
Though I have not asked.

Martina Vitakova