Beginning of the Fall Semester. The End.

Robert Ellis

Robert Ellis*

These two weeks have been hard.
Heavy weight of the closing of the seminary
I’ve invested myself in for a quarter century.
The castle walls have been breached,
the castle keep in ruins. So many colleagues gone,
so many students graduated or transferred.
No new faces appear.

Still, there is the joy of conversations
with students who remain. Still,
I find energy in the journey of learning together,
but it feels like working in exile, teaching
in outbuildings around what used to be the center
of a vibrant community. Sadness lingers
like the heavy summer humidity of recent days.

Then, this morning on the back porch, 
Nespresso in hand, several unexpected gifts
from God: The temperature a cool 70 degrees
after the reprieve of rain last evening,
too cool for the normal summer mosquitoes
at dawn. And a beautiful peach-colored bloom
opened wide on the hibiscus my friend Daniel
gave me months ago. Then two hummingbirds,
wings beating too fast to see. The unstoppable
movement of being, what they were created to be.
And the weight lifted.

James Wainscoat

*Yesterday, a friend sent me a copy of a personal insight, what I consider a prose poem, from Robert Ellis. I loved the imagery and took the liberty to line out Bob’s poetic narrative to highlight the wonderful images in Bob’s poem, and it is his poem; all the words and images are his. All I did was tighten his prose poem, shaping the narrative’s imagery into lines. I asked Bob’s permission to Post his poem on my personal website

What I find in Bob’s words and imagery is a friend grieving over loss that all of us, especially now, can identify with, a friend who discovers beauty and God’s grace when it is most needed.
Bob Fink