Ah-buh-nim

The little boy in the picture wore the most adorable overalls

And brand-spanking-new shoes

He approached the chicken in the unfamiliar garden

With the utmost deference,

The pears still hung on the trees, each carefully wrapped in old newspapers to shield them from pestilence

An unseasonably warm day to worship one’s ancestors and

The food at the restaurant was good

Something about historically accurate food

In the last few moments before

The two little red-headed children

Reported

All they saw–aggressor-accomplice-victim

The little boy in the picture wore the most adorable overalls

Frankie Gonzalez

I can feel the force of the grief, another small tragedy. His death, like his life, will be a small story, buried beneath bigger fires, the roiling of big boy fights, what is the death of one little boy when the world is burning?

Everything.

His life was everything

To him

And to the One who stood at the field of Heaven

Waiting all those days to welcome him home

Wipe away every tear

No more crying

No more pain

This Little Girl

I want to say so many things to

This man who does not really see

“This little girl”

But I know You

See her, see me, see them

All the little ones who

Need a God like You

Take my sins away, heal my wounds, stay until I am well, bring justice in your wings, never blame the victim, never stop searching for treasure

You

who were, who are, who always will be

Just You,

and “this little girl”

The Irony of Leana Wen

I have now heard a cool 3 times from Leana Wen, alternately billed as emergency room physician or former health commissioner for the city of Baltimore on how we can do various (good and helpful) things to slow down the coronavirus spread.

So where is the irony?

Leana’s last and most notable job was not being either an ER doc or a health commissioner, it was being the public face of Planned Parenthood, an organization dedicated to promoting and providing abortions.

Abortion kills a lot more humans than Covid-19. We could quibble at the death rate for the latter–1 percent to 9 percent depending on the demographics and strains.

But the abortion kill rate is pretty damn close to 100 percent. If an unborn baby gets exposed to abortion

He or she usually doesn’t live long enough to quibble

About omissions in Leana Wen’s cv.

The Feast of Thorns

Long before our terrible story your birthday was already

the feast of Servites pruning winter roses. I cling to that now, all the other days this day could be:

Obstinate mountains lumber into obeisant seas

Lame men whole, blind men see

Dead men rise and shake off their shroudy bindings

impossible things all around ya

If only you will

See

Damned Pictures

I have grief, things I drag to the Cross.

Pictures so rough there is no other place to take them.

Jesus became horror the day he died.

All those damned pictures

Of the terrible we do or become.

He becomes the damned

Pictures

what if he had not?

Where would I go with this?

If all I had left was prone to burn

And God were just

A consuming fire?

Luke 23:44-45,48 NIV

[44] It was now about noon, and darkness came over the whole land until three in the afternoon, [45] for the sun stopped shining. And the curtain of the temple was torn in two. [48] When all the people who had gathered to witness this sight saw what took place, they beat their breasts and went away.

The Last Normal Day

We are eternal, they are eternal, I tell her, but I know that there is something else, the purest kind of paradox, or is it tautology? Etiology? The woman in the park, on the streets, flagging down motorists, in the parking lots of churches, where people congregate like flocks of birds, always, always asking this uncomfortable question–

When was your last normal day? When was your last normal day?

When? When the truth

Stalks in

Wide awake

ScarJo wha?

Dear Scarlett Johansson,

Would you please 1. Read Woody Allen’s Wikipedia page 2. Comment on the number of time he has trucked out the trope of the teenage ingénue in his films and private life 3. Tell us more about how you assess his sexual relationships with these teenage girls (real and thinly fictional) and then

Ask yourself how old was Dylan when she was dragged into a rape story? Would you want that for your daughter? Would anyone?

Believe is a strong word.

With lasting consequences.

Protect your ass, you mean

Recently I took an online “course” designed to protect Christian ministries from lawsuits arising from child sexual abuse.

I knew it was going to be annoying, but it was worse than I had anticipated.

Here are some (but definitely not all) of the curriculum deficiencies:

  • There was very little information about helping victims of child abuse
  • Many of the recommendations were protective of the church over the child
  • There were broad, unsubstantiated allegations about the victims of child abuse and their families which included saying that they were mentally disabled and prone to familial dysfunction
  • The course stated and repeated that the adult survivors of child sexual abuse were not emotionally stable, neither able nor willing to process and recover from childhood trauma
  • The methods of ferreting out both abuse and abusers were shot through with harmful stereotypes and inadequate information
  • The course taught the participant to favor in-organization reporting over direct and immediate reporting to law enforcement, legal guardians, and child protective services
  • The test reinforced curriculum biases

I contacted the company directly after I took the course and asked them for information on their source material and bibliography.

No answer.

I am not a rape victim, but I was targeted by at least one pedophile when I was young, and I have children who are childhood sexual assault survivors.

I am not “low IQ,” and my children are all smarter than I am. Had any of us been “low IQ” (term taken directly from course material), we would still deserve help from the law and relief from abuse.

Our individual and collective intelligence was not the reason my children were molested by my adopted son, but it also did not save us from protracted and compounded grief.

First from the felonies,

Later from the way “good people did nothing,” or worse still, did things to let us know they wanted to silence our story.

Jesus said, tell the little children they will always be safe with me.

Yet in order to protect their legal asses big, well-known communities and institutions all over this country are serving up biased, unsubstantiated defamation of childhood rape victims and their families in place of solid, simple procedures to ensure that children are safe in church and that the law is followed.

It should never be “protect my ministry,” over protect the children.

Matthew 18

Oblígate carnivores

For months now I have walked carefully, gingerly, with the rocking gait of the elderly, infirmed, or, in my case, feet surreptitiously lamenting for the loss of the whole–

broken heart

crepe-fine skin

Liver, spleen, lungs, and stomach all exposed

As the obligate carnivores we tended as children stalk the house now

Grown

Larger than life,

Pacing hungrily to and fro

As we eye them in dismay

Their pets now