Saturday, May 29, 2010



Her thin legs knock together and
her slender arms shiver.
Her tiny toes,
papaya-pink polish glossing each nail,
grip the edge of the wooden plank.

Her brand new blue bathing suit is dry
and her hair is pulled
tightly into a long, brown ponytail.
Her wide, green eyes
past the edge of the dock,
and out onto the placid lake.
She is calculating.

What sensation lies underneath the glassy surface that separates air from water?

Her freckled face tenses.
Eyes clamp shut,
lips seal tight.
Deep breath.

Knees bend.
A leap.
A splash.

Nothing for a moment
and then,
as she emerges from underneath,
a gasp of breath.

She is alive.


A young boy’s nose pressed up against the window screen—
his tiny awestruck face is illuminated by blue lightning across the water.

His eyes are bright
with wonder.
The sky lights up again.

Another bolt cracks
through the cloudy night.


Marching down the pathway—
into the trees,
the ground
littered with debris
from last night’s storm—
he comes
a plain, blunt shovel.

A black snake,
likely displaced
by the wind
that blew through
the wooded peninsula,
is poised to strike.

The man raises the shovel
above his head
and the dull metal glints
for a moment
as he begins to speak.
"Lunch will be at

The snake halts,
at his feet.

"Romans eight.
For the creation was subjected to futility,
not willingly,"

He quickly and accurately
lowers the
spade, crushing
the head of the

"but because of him
who subjected it,
in hope that the creation itself
will be set free"

The shovel sinks
through the snake's flesh.
It writhes on the ground
limp for a moment
and then stiffened throughout.

"from its bondage to corruption
and obtain the freedom
of the glory
of the children
of God."

Its body shoots upward,
curling rapidly around
the handle.
Grasping for life
that is slowly
slipping away.
Its final battle against
metal and wood and man

"For we know that the whole creation
has been groaning together in the pains of childbirth until now.
And not only the creation,
but we ourselves,
who have the firstfruits of the Spirit,
as we wait eagerly for adoption as sons,
the redemption of our bodies."

The serpent is dead.
Its loss is His victory.