Sunday, December 25, 2016

To This End Was He Was Born

We had a beautiful Christmas service last Sunday, one that left me filled with the spirit of Christ's birth. I was grateful when the poem shared below came to me rather quickly on Saturday morning, as I had been running behind all week, and it was meant to conclude the program. Happily, I was able to read the completed poem as planned, proving to me once more that prayer works! I hope it honors the Savior as much as I honor Him, on Christmas Day and always.

To This End Was He Born
©2015 Susan Noyes Anderson

A child was given to the world
one perfect, starlit night.
He came to bless us with His truth
and fill our souls with light.
He was the Son of God and Mary,
human yet divine,
the only One who had the pow’r
to take your sins and mine.

The angels heralded His birth;
the very skies took part,
and shepherds ventured from their flocks
to offer Christ their heart.
Even the Magi worshipped Him,
arriving from afar
to celebrate the newborn King
beneath that guiding star.

His mission was a saving one.
Christ taught us how to live.
No sacrifice too great, He offered
all He had to give.
His gifts were many. When a child,
He spake as if a man.
The people wondered at the boy
but did not understand.

Though Jesus could not fully know
the path His feet would trod,
He soon began to sense His mission
as the Son of God.
He grew in strength and wisdom as
His purpose was defined.
He was the Father’s firstborn Son,
the Savior of mankind.

His ministry began with words:
three words, “Come, follow me.”
He chose apostles, simple men,
to share His company.
Disciples followed Christ as well,
inspired by His stories.
Beside Him, they learned much about
God’s kingdom and its glories.

Along the way, from place to place,
Christ healed, and saved, and blessed.
The blind could see; the lame could walk;
the suffering soul found rest.
Even the dead took up their lives,
if Jesus willed it so.
“Who is this man?” the people asked,
“and whither does He go?”

“I go before thy face,” said He.
“Hear me, and heed my voice.
Who chooses to obey my words
hath reason to rejoice.”
The righteous loved His goodness, but
the wicked feared his power.
They yearned to steal His life and
plotted evil, hour-by-hour.

When Jesus knew the end was nigh,
He gathered up His men
and gave them a last supper…
His way to say amen
to all that He had taught them.
Later, He brake the bread
and offered up the wine
as blood and body in His stead.

“One of ye shall betray me, one
deny me,” Jesus said.
Judas revealed Him with a kiss;
Peter, in panic, fled.
Early, entreated by their Master
a close watch to keep;
Peter, James, and John failed Christ
by falling fast asleep.

But Jesus knew the task was His
and bore the weight alone
of every sin and grief and sorrow
all the world could own.
He bore it until blood escaped
from every sacred pore;
and when they raised Him on the cross,
He chose to suffer more.

He chose to suffer, for the power
was His to end it all;
but He was born to rescue us,
to save us from the Fall.
“Here am I, send me,” He said,
so long and long ago.
Jesus knew well the sacrifice
required here below.

Christ gave His life so willingly,
‘midst earthly judges’ scorn.
In agony, He bled and hung;
for us, His flesh was torn.
For us, His life was forfeited.
He died, that we might live;
and ere He gave His body up,
pled, “Father, please forgive.”

He begged forgiveness for us all.
As shepherds guard their sheep,
our Savior and Redeemer gave
His life, our souls to keep.
And when He took it up again,
the promise was fulfilled.
The Son of God, the Son of Man,
had done as Father willed.

A newborn baby in a stall,
a gentle mother’s heart.
Two fathers, one on earth and one
in heaven, from the start.
Animals and angels, shepherds,
wise men from afar…
all beheld the baby Jesus,
born beneath a star.

The brightest star in all the heavens…
How else could it be?…
The Light of Christ is brilliant.
May it shine through you and me.
On this and every Christmas Day,
the gift He seeks is clear:
that we receive His gift to us
and keep it through the year.

Our love for Him is manifest
in how we choose to live…
in loving one another;
in striving to forgive;
in honoring His sacrifice
by offering our own;
in doing what we must to kneel,
one day, before His throne.

To this end was He born; for this
cause came He to the earth.
Rejoice! Rejoice! And sing Noel
for our dear Savior’s birth.
Hosannah in the highest…Peace
on earth, good will to men.
Let every soul sing praise to Him
forevermore. Amen.


For more Christmas here.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

The Tree in Me

©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Plant all my roots in rich brown earth
and stretch my branches wide.
Let golden rays of morning sun
fill every space inside.

Surround my leaves with bright blue sky
and float me on a cloud.
Set free the seeking soul in me;
remove the bleary shroud.

Make of my spirit something grand.
Expand the light I see.
Open my eyes to sacred gifts
that lie fallow in me.

Raise up new growth on mountain tops;
spread seeds from crest to crest.
Help me to claim and cultivate
the ground my heart loves best.

for more poems, click below

Friday, October 7, 2016

Pinch Me. Please.

Do you ever feel a bit unmoored by life? What is it YOU do to get fastened down again? I generally like to vent, often in a poem. An example is this latest poem of mine, where I decided venting in sonnet form might be an interesting move. Hope you have some fun with it. I did.

©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Perhaps I've slipped the bonds of earth too soon,
or maybe I have simply loosed my grip
and orbited, a rather ghastly trip
that leaves me somewhere underneath the moon.
The dish has run off with my errant spoon.
No cow in sight, and yet a pirate ship
encircles me, my erstwhile dreams to strip,
bursting my bubbles with a mean harpoon.
I am no novice to the fractured dream,
the fairy tale that twists when it should turn.
My storyline's been split at every seam.
Release the purloined keyboard. Press return.
Or better yet, skip to the final scene,
where all is well and nothing left to learn.

for more poems, click below

Monday, October 3, 2016

A Humble Heart

©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Are we not all beggars
before our risen Lord?
In death, all things are lost to us,
save those He hath restored.

His love and grace lend healing balm
to soothe the weeping soul.
Through His atoning sacrifice
is every man made whole.

Our Savior came into this world
all blessings to impart.
What will we offer in return,
if not a humble heart?

"The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit: 
a broken and a contrite heart, O God, thou wilt not despise." 
Psalms 51:17

"And ye shall offer for a sacrifice unto me a broken heart and a contrite spirit." 
3 Nephi 9:20

Saturday, September 24, 2016

Two Pumpkins: haibun for the ages

Two Pumpkins: haibun for the ages
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

The pumpkins are already sitting on my porch. "Aren't you getting those a little early this year?" ask my husband, son, daughter. I answer in the negative, later realizing they are right. Circumstances have made of me a paradox this season: an aging person in a hurry for change. It's as if the wind that blows every falling leaf to its final resting place could propel and remove all the unwelcome detritus of my life, as if the browning of summer and spectacular burst of fall color might put an end to this summer of distress, replacing it with orange hues and scarlet splendor. I long for brisker days; cool, crisp air, the scents of wood and spice. And yes, two pumpkins on my porch. In September.

The silent tree waits.
Tired branches loose their burdens.
Swirling leaves flutter.

Assignment: Write a haibun with one paragraph about change, 
followed by a haiku.
(A haibun is a prosimetric literary form originating in Japan, 
combining prose and haiku.)

for more haibuns, click below

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Election Reflection

Election Reflection
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Donald J. Trump,
too often a chump.
Both his hair and his skin
are a trifle too thin.

Hillary Clinton,
determined to win one.
Her perception of truth
is a little uncouth.

John or Jane Doe,
nominees we don't know. 
We wish they were running,
and that ain't just funning.

Assignment: Write a clerihew, a comic verse on biographical topics consisting of two couplets and a specific rhyming scheme. (I have combined three clerihews to form one poem.)

for more clerihews, click below

Thursday, September 15, 2016

House Rules: Updated

House Rules: Updated
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Today I am open
to new ways
better treatment
wiser thoughts
nuanced interpretations
broader understanding
measured reactions.

I embrace beauty
over belligerence,
grace over guilt,
release over

I dismiss judgment,
impatience, intolerance,
hopelessness, helplessness...

offer negativity,
blame, and bitterness
one night's lodging 

Assignment: a 44-word quadrille using the word "open."

for more quadrilles, click below

Reflections of Saint Malo

Reflections of St. Malo
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Come hearken back to days of yore.
Visit Saint Malo's rocky shore.
Down sunny California way,
it's sure to steal your heart away.

Designed to look like Normandy,
a fishing village by the sea,
this paradise of peace and plenty
laid its roots in 1920.

Cottages with charm to spare,
courtyards kissed with salty air,
private beaches, shells to comb,
dolphins diving through the foam.

Generations grew up here,
reuniting every year,
handing down a legacy:
life and love and family.

Few have left here; few have sold,
honoring those bonds of old.
Community is hard to find;
St. Malo is the lasting kind.

A privilege, here, to set my sails,
to walk these sands and brick-laid trails,
replete with sacred memory,
a gift of hope and reverie.

Assignment: A take-me-along travel or vacation poem

for more travel poems, click below

Saturday, September 10, 2016

Sweet Reminders

Sweet Reminders
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Of late, I have been much away from home,
not of my own design but others' need.
The mind finds compensation as I roam:
appreciation for the life I lead.

A place and partner of my own are mine,
grounded in years and happy memories...
A cozy nook for solitary time,
dream-space to loose creative energies...

A yard with wise old trees that I adore
and bushes that have laid their roots down deep.
They rarely ask for water any more,
yet bloom in lasting beauty, ours to keep.

Too easy are these gifts to take in stride,
counting their goodness as my daily due.
Once home, the scent of jasmine wafts inside,
and every blessing greets my heart anew.

for more poems using the  
word "bloom," click below

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

13 Wishes

13 Wishes
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Plant me beside a mountain spring.
Don't let the stinging nettles sting.
Lift fallen birds into their trees.
Preserve the ailing honey bees.

Release the calories from food.
Grant frazzled moms a happy mood.
Lead every white cell to its germ.
Help flirty ova hook a sperm.

Send bedbugs clear to Timbuktu;
send all of Congress with them, too.
Un-spend the dollars they have spent.
Find someone sane for President.

That last wish may be too ambitious
(circumstances not propitious).
So I'll grant your wish, my friend
and cause this silly poem to end.

for more wish poems, click below

Saturday, August 27, 2016

Burdens to Blessings

Burdens to Blessings
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

When life rears up and strikes me down,
when all the world turns bleak,
I look to God for hope and find
the comfort that I seek.

He may not snatch me from the jaws
of troubles I must bear,
yet He walks with me faithfully.
I feel His presence there.

Sometimes I choose to turn away
when suffering is great.
I rail against His timing, spurn
His help that comes "too late."

My heart does not remember then
what I remember now;
that if I would be as He is,
my life must teach me how.

For strength flows from the spirit
that has exercised its might.
Each violent storm I conquer
brings me closer to His light.

My Father has a plan for me,
a plan I once endorsed.
Each soul must find its way to Him;
no spirit shall be forced.

May I accept with grace all things
that bring me to my knees––
in joy or sorrow, grateful 
for my opportunities.

The world is one small moment
pulled from vast eternity.
Father, I would be mindful 
of thy priceless gifts to me:

Life lessons that I need to learn,
a family filled with love,
a Savior who will lead me home
to dwell with Him above.

for more "blessings" poems click below

Thursday, August 18, 2016

The Stranger

The Stranger
© Susan Noyes Anderson
I remember the cat in better days, strutting
smugly through the soft, gold carpet, master
of his own paw-printed hallways, a silky legacy
on each duvet. I was an observer then, amused,
detached. The house would soon be mine, the cat
a memory; belonging as he did to doting
––who loved, it seemed, as only those
whose animals become their children can.
It was a pretty lie; the cat stayed on,
left to the streets and framed in unlit windows.
The shadows own him now, protect him too;
coat him in dark disguises only soap and light
––oh yes––love could shed. He stalks his past,
slow-moving, locked in dreams; unwilling, still,
to call the night his home. Restless, relentless,
searching for his people. He stares into our eyes;
we do not know him. We do not take him in.
Assignment: Write a poem on the theme of  "cats."
for more poems click below

Keeping a Lid on It

Keeping a Lid on It
©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Emptied my feelings in a jar
and shook them all around.
They bounced, bled, bubbled purple red
but never made a sound.

Who knew? The ruckus from my head
is now safely contained!
My lid (not flipped), securely closed.
My angst? Bottled (not brained).

Assignment: Write a 44-word quadrille including the word "jar"

for more quadrilles, click below

Saturday, August 13, 2016


©2016 susan noyes anderson

i cannot write
it's all gone wrong
my words elude me
like a song
 that i've sung 
many times before
and yet recall 
the tune no more

could be i'm rusty
like a spout
and need to flush
the rubble out
so please forgive me
while i free
my brain of
crappy poetry

if you can stand to
read the stuff
(admittedly, it
might be rough)
be sure, my friend
to let me know
when cool, clear poems
resume their flow

assignment: open link night

for more dVerse poems, click below

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Blue Elephant

©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

What is this creature on my chest?
Blue elephant has come to nest.
My lungs are smashed; my heart is crushed.
My whole, wide world in blue is brushed.

Not robin's egg or ocean blue,
more like a mess of midnight goo.
And I'm surrounded by the stuff.
Blue bites! Big-time. Enough's enough!!

It's hard to breathe, harder to talk.
I locomote by belly-walk.
Yo, Dumbo. Get off, dude. You stink.
(Henceforth, my pachyderms lean pink...)

Assignment: Write a blue poem.

 for more blue poems, click below

Friday, July 29, 2016

No Go with the Flow

©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

Sometimes I curl my toes
against the tide.
Immovable, I catch
a swell of pride
and ride it nowhere.
Only I hold sway.
No force of nature 
spirits me away.

A pity that I'm stuck
in shifting sand,
somewhere between
cool water
dry land.

This week's motif was acceptance.

for more poems click below

Monday, July 11, 2016

On Hiatus

©2016 Susan Noyes Anderson

I'm on hiatus from my life
but not by choice.
Don't get me wrong, as my kids' mom,
I have a voice.

And yet autonomy for mommies
comes with strings attached.
I'd drop the sun on a dead run
for anyone I've hatched.

So I am off on an adventure
I would rather miss.
"Have child will travel" is my motto.
Service is my bliss.

But could there be more happy reasons?
We are overdue.
Enough of flash floods, fires, and famine.
Let's try something new!

For Poets United, theme of "absence."