Personal Poetry and Prose

writing, journal



Courage is the earnest prayer
That tames a fretful mind,
Courage is the pain we bear
When hope is left behind.

Courage speaks in honesty,
Though loss may surely follow,
Truth bends the will reluctantly
To chance what lies tomorrow.

And courage will in silence wait,
Though design would intercede,
And instead allows the hand of fate
Its tapestry to weave.

Courageous is the pioneer,
Who takes the obscure roads,
Not resting in the known and clear,
But lives as life unfolds.

Courage is the willingness
To unveil the shadow of our being,
And face the fear, the grief, and emptiness
that give life authentic meaning.

Courage bids, “Surrender pride
look behind the mirror,”
To embrace, not shame, the flaws inside,
And make amends for error.

Courage doesn’t walk away
From darkness in its path,
But meets the night assailing day,
With truth, and love and wrath.

Courage is the heart unsealed,
Though temptation is to hide,
Courage is the soul revealed,
All armor set aside.

Courage lives reality,
Each moment full and clear,
With patience and integrity,
The path to bliss from fear.

©Darlene Lancer 1991


Unlike Descartes, I’m not so sure
If, or who “I” am,
Or who’s the “I” who questions this,
Or when this “I” began.

Is the “I” who talks to me,
Different from the “I” who listens?
“I” can’t be found in the brain,
And it wanders off in sleep,
But soon returns to weave my dreams,
Then revives memories of it “I” keep.

But is the “I” who re-members
the antecedent “I” gone-by?
Should my memory dull and fail,
Would “I” too wane null and die?

Does this “I” persist in coma,
Or alter in a trance?
Yet evaporate when lovers’ kiss
or meditate on emptiness?

Perhaps this “I” comes and goes,
With thoughts arising from the mist,
Like stars that fill the evening sky
That fade at dawn, though still exist.

So is this “I” my own construction,
Made of thoughts and memory?
Or if it’s more, then who creates
Cosmic dust in our anatomy?

©Darlene Lancer 2001, 2019


When I see weeds pierce  cracked cement,
or roots gnarl through pipes and walls,
I remember God’s radiance can also crack
cemented, gnarly patterns of my mind.
I need only sit and wait and trust that
Light will come not by me, but through me.

©Darlene Lancer 2006, 2020

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