This is the second of seven poems written over a three day period during the annual School of Theology Dubose Lectures. The little stone home, Pollywood, in which I stayed and where these were written sits along a bluff guarded by trees who have seen more sunrises than I. It is not far from the Natural Bridge.


Faces familiar.

Greetings sound warmly

Arms embrace remembering

Days long ago when hopes

Overflowed for a future

Of changing lives, sharing

Good News to transform the loss

In a world pained deeply yet

Still not as damaged as it will

Become as the years brought

Burden after burden into our lives

Yet somehow the aches and pains

Of our souls are eased in a moment

Of joyful reunion among companions

Who have undertaken a common

Journey from the Holy Mountain

To carry the Light of our Savior

To those who wander in the

Darkest valleys of daily life.


Ram Lopez – 27 September 2016 – Sewanee, TN



This is one of seven poems written over a three day period during the annual School of Theology Dubose Lectures. The little stone home, Pollywood, in which I stayed and where these were written sits along a bluff guarded by trees who have seen more sunrises than I. It is not far from the Natural Bridge.



The Mountain stands

Tall, imposing, welcoming those –

Whose upward trek completed –

Find refuge within Gates

Where Angels roam freely

Returned now after their long

Duty protecting Sons and Daughters

During their sojourn in lands

Afar from the rustling leaves

Of tall oaks and singing birds

Singing songs of welcome

Whistling in dulcet notes the

Song – “Once embraced by the

Master of this Mountain, no matter

How far you travel, the Welcome is

Sweet, your soul’s Feast is served.

You, my Child, are arrived Home.”

By Ram Lopez – 27 September 2016 – Sewanee, TN 


Made well

Then Jesus said to the Samaritan cleansed from leprosy, “Get up and go on your way; your faith has made you well.” (Luke 17.19 – NRSV)


By Ram Lopez

6 October 2016


“Your faith…”

My faith. Our faith.

There’s not much faith

in my fear-filled life. Awaiting

Your healing Word

in the midst of my brokenness

is a trial of endurance.

Can I hang on?

Will I find the other side?

Or will I, like Moses, reach the edge

of the journey home, see the

longed-for shore

and be denied entrance?

“Your faith,” you say.

But it is not my faith that can carry

my burdened heart. I need

Your faith. Your faith in Your

Father’s love, in your Father’s

powerful desire for all of me.


“…has made you well.”

Curious is my new reality.

I no longer bear the outward

signs of my illness. This is not

a new experience. Often have

the wounds covered over

giving the appearance of curing.

Yet, deep within, I felt the seeds

of sickness germinating,

awaiting the moment

of painful sprouting yet again.

But by your Word the

wounds have scabbed and

I do not feel the silent regrouping

of the sickness massing to

mount it’s next charge.

I feel well. I sense change deep

within.  All that remains are

scars from the battle I could not

fight or win. But You, Your Faith,

has made me well. Your Word

has the power to heal.  Your

Faith gives power to trust.

“Go your way,” You said. And

I go. Yet I know I do not travel alone

any longer. I am well. All is well.


“…go on your way…”

My journey to the far edge of life

continues on and on. Yet, though

many miles have grown between

that moment and now, You are

with me. As the longed-for shore

of Life becomes more focused

within my sight, I have no despair.

The edge is but the first step of

a new journey.  By Your Faith,

I will walk into the place

where no sickness, no pain

roams.  Only the Promised Life

of Hope, Mercy and Love

walking in plain Sight of

the One who takes my sickness

and gives me His Wholeness

inviting my thankful praise.



The Lesser Light

Photo credit: Kristy Lynn Cloud

Bright and whole,

radiating warmth
through the cool air,
Lesser Light, you
look upon the works
of Your Creator’s
Hands scurrying,
heads down, serving
the false idols of earth.
Bright night come,
lighten the shadows
of my long night.
Herald of the new day,
reflect the radiance
of our Loving Maker,
shine on as night
wanes. Still my soul
as God’s Glory dawns.
27 October 2015


Life in 7 minute chunks.

Conflict resolved by the
bottom of the hour, with
sales pitches to move us
toward “happily-ever-after.”
But there is no happily-
ever-after in real life. It
exists only in the tepid
reality of high-definition
and mega-pixels carried
into my private world by an
unseen current that washes
away what is left of my soul,
denuding, leaving only a sad
life exchanged for shadows.
21 October 2015
Who said technology was an advance?

…my small part…

…although I’m not sure of all that
preceded my arrival, I do know
I am here now.  Later, things will
move on when I am no longer.
That is the way life is, after all,
in the midst of cries birth occurs,
a new life emerges into the world
in ways which will bring unknown
change into lives ready to face
the ever-changing patterns of
adulthood. Parent and child walk
side by side for a time until the nearing
of a new moment of new life, an ending
that is the beginning of a new reality
and more soft cries heralding a new birth,
transitioning from one voice to the next…


21 October 2015
I contemplated my small part in the larger story of life in the world.  My role is a part but only a part.  So many other parts of the story went along quite well without me before I was born and the story will continue long after I am gone.  I do not get to see the end of the story.  I merely get to have my say while I am here.  The ellipsis is symbolic for me of the words which come before and after me.  I am humbled and grateful…



taking shape

surrounding, bounding

new possibilities for new life

creating, calling out

of nothing all




sounding clear

defining, bringing

fresh expressions of grace

giving, nurturing in

us a gentle




sun peeking

brightening, revealing

the first gasps of day’s breath

speaking, moving

towards joyful




20 October 2015


The flatness that surrounds is dull,

deadening the senses, slowly leeching

life from hapless souls stuck in the

wicked sameness of daily life.


I wake to this morning by morning

wondering if today will provide the

moment of color – deep, renewing,

capable of restoring my voice which


has become sullenly silent.  Why,

I wonder, has the flatness of life

stolen my voice?  How do words

hide in such plain sight?  Is there


a secret to call to them, to bring them

back home, to unleash their power

to reshape the flatness, to renew

what has grown weary, to bring life?



16 October 2015


Music forms as the notes float upward,
little fingers dancing across black and white.

Her voice joins the notes encircling them,
forming a sacred melody of joyful praise.

What calls forth this response of prayer
through song? Who breathes life into

her small voice? O Divine Spirit, ’tis You
who animates the breath pushed through

throat and chords, who leads fingers in
their walk across the ivory keyboard.

Gracious Spirit, You call forth prayer in
ways no words can utter. Only by You

do our music and dance, flowing words,
simple drawings and molded clay emerge

from the creative space, transforming
simple offerings into beautiful Praise.

1 October 2015