Look now, the broken road

Look now, the broken road

Look now, the broken road 150 150 Robert Alan Rife








Where footsteps once fell, proud and sure,

and met solid pavement with unwavering courage,

now there creeps, under guise of night

a pall, a weary and whimsical word of doubt.

The core of dreams once held aloft to sun-drenched hope

now hide, tucked in folds of fabric and crevice of stone.

Shiver and should, wither and would, careless and could;

the words of humbled discontent and self-abasement

foretell a morning not here, but night so stubborn.

Were it not for the taste of dust

one might mistake white for black, black for naught.

Sharp the shame of whispered this and promised that

when time stood still to salute my place.

Go, for now is not the time for talk or even willful gestures

betokening peace or grace or surety.

Let me drink from the bitter pond if only

to remember the taste of freedom.

Look away, don’t pretend that this one knows

or feels or sees as one should.

No, pray to the silent god, forgotten shadow of something greater.

But for all this, I can see someone lurking,

waiting, longing…for what, I do not know.

So then, here I will sit and wait for this well-known stranger

to, once again,


Robert Alan Rife, June 21, 2012

Robert Alan Rife

My friends think me complicated. My employer thinks me talented but at times, troublesome. God, and my wife see me as I am - a philosopher-poet with a rather circuitous journey of life and faith, the music and worship minister at Yakima Covenant Church, a singer-songwriter, multi-instrumentalist, poet and writer. I am a graduate from Spring Arbor University with an M.A. in Spiritual Formation and Leadership. These poems, and my life, are dedicated to those places where life, liturgy, theology and the arts intersect with and promote spiritual formation – who we are becoming. Join me on this journey to word-land. Maybe we'll find each other there and share a story or two.

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