It is a thing lamented:attributed to this poverty of language…We have only this word:


for love, and for love, and for love.

It is said that it stands for so many different things.


There is this:

One of the first loves I ever knew

It was love.

It was love.

It was love.

but it was a child-love, a first love

I still didn’t quite understand

how I’d gotten her to come with me

on a date to the amusement park

but somehow

there we were.

I can confess

to the depths

of my manipulations

only now all these decades later.

My interest in the log ride

had nothing to do with the log ride.

I remember that endless winding line


I remember that faux-hollowed out log.

I remember it had room for four

But only two seats.

I, being bigger

jumped in the back

and left you with this choice.

A time more endless than the waiting in line

That half second while I waited:

Would you take the front seat?

And leave me lonely?

Or would you slide in

in front of me

Would I feel your low back on my belly

your outer thighs on my innder thighs

your pinkies on the metal inside handle just infront of my thumbs?


and yes. and yes.

I still tingle where we touched

half my lifetime ago.

The way you burrowed your shoulder blades

into my pectorals





We howled and screamed

We were splashed and we were rocked

and in that final amazing downward climactic plummet

I was in love:

It was love

love and love.

but a child’s love.

And it was the foundations

for something more.

A growing thing,

a not-yet fully grown thing.

call it an adolescent’s love.

I love you now

I love



And you in this pain





It was unacceptable.

This pain.

I will do battle with this pain.

They always told me that pain does battle with love

and I spent those years

fighting the ocean with a garden hose

never guessing how they lied to me.

until the darkest times

with you finally asleep

and me

feeling like I let you down

and love let me down

because we still hurt.

I have no answers

and you never ever wanted me

to have the answers.

but the pain doesn’t go away and I tell myself and you that I’ll love you


it all.

But if through

means I’ll outlast the pain.

I know that I can’t anymore.

I’m past blaming you

and I’m past blaming me

I just know

that my love won’t change

what’s gone on before

and what’s happening now

and hear I am know

maybe grown up…

in at least that one way just barely out of adolescence

This same love is a different love

It needed what came before…

As it becomes it’s own end.

I will love for you loves sake…

I love you for you

and I will love you for me

and that

that is all.


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The stories that speak to our soul begin at a home where things are good. Cinderella is happy with her father. The three little pigs have grown up and are ready to move on. Bilbo Baggins knows his shire. Adam and Eve walk with God in the garden. My story isn’t much different. There was a time and a place where it was so good. There was a community for me. And there was joy. We were filled with a sincere desire to do what God wanted us to do. We possessed explanations and understandings that went a certain distance. We offered security and tradition and laughter. For a lot of years, that was enough. I have this sense that it was also necessary. I have this surety, now, that it certainly wasn’t everything. There were some things that became increasingly problematic as time went by. There was a desire to package things up so very neatly. Sunday morning services were efficient and strategic. Responses to differences of opinion were premeditated. Formula began to feel more important than being real. A real desire for everybody to be one of us, but also a real sense that there is an us, and there is a them. They carried a regret that it has to be this way, but deeper than this regret was a surety that this is how it is. I began to recognize that there was a cost of admission to that group. There were people who sat at the door, collecting it. Those people wished they didn’t have to. But I guess they felt like they did have to. They let some people in, and they left others out. There was a provisional membership. My friends did possess a desire to accommodate people that are different… But it would be best for everyone concerned if they were only a little bit different. I did make many steps forward in this place. Before I went there, there were lies that I believed. Some of the things that I learned there, I still hold on to. But that place is not my home anymore. Those people are not my community anymore. There were times it was hard. I am engaged in a different community now. And I am working hard at finding a place in many different places now, embracing many different kind of families. I don’t always get it right. I am trying and I am learning and I am moving foreward. I have this sense that I am not alone in these experiences. I believe that we are tribe and we are growing. We are pilgrims, looking for a new holy land. Perhaps we won’t settle on the same spot of land. But if you’ve read this far, I am thinking that we are probably headed in the same general direction. I have begun this blog to talk about where my journey is taking me. In every space, we find people who help us along. And maybe we can get to know each other, here. We embrace ideas that provide a structure for the things we believe, and perhaps we can share these too. Maybe we can form a group, a tribe, a community, if we can figure out a way to work through the shadow of these kinds of groups, if we can bigger than the us-and-them ideas that have caused so much trouble in the past. As important as they are, I think the very nature of online interactions will lend itself to something equally powerful. I am stumbling onto these practices that my grandfathers and great grandfathers in the faith engaged in. I am learning about these attitudes and intuitions are so different than the kinds of things we call doctrine today. I don’t know about you, but I am running out of patience, and even interest, in conversations about doctrine. I hope that maybe you’ll share a little something about where your journey is taking you, and maybe our common joys and challenges might help each other along, and we might lift each other up. Thanks for doing this journey with me.

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