Posted in Poetry and Prose

The Email Prayer

Dear Emailer, Please can we stop with the “reply to all” Because you’re making my inbox so full. Unnecessary full. There is a time for us to all be informed. But its mostly a lot less than you’ve come to believe. So it’s with the dearest plea, I implore you to think Before you press SEND. Amen. Now to “publish to all” 😉

Posted in Faith & Church, Inspirational & Observations from Life

When Christians are frustrating!

I posted a really cool quote on Facebook the other day from the Little Prince.
This is the frustrating response I got:

There is a side to Christians that I don’t like.
(Please don’t get me wrong. I am a beleiver. I love Jesus. it’s His people that frustrate me at times.)
Christians just like to throw out verses and opinions on things without context.

And when I say “christians” I know I am generalizing. Thanks to those who get it right.
We need more level headed, believers.

Anyway, this guy who quoted a verse about the heart being deceiptful has not even read the book. The Little Prince. So how could he have an educated opinion? The message of the verse and the message of book are vastly different.

Context is key.

People, not just Christians. Please use your heads more! 😉

Posted in Poetry and Prose

Stringed words

I string out these words of mine
Hanging out on a line
Watch the stage, clear the noise, this time is mine

There you live, there you stand
On a different land
Oh, just maybe you would understand

But these rhymes
These lines
Are a-part of me

i catch them, i read them, i quote them, i share them, i carry them
i don’t know where they land or where they dry
and leave impressions

But I keep them coming
I keep them going

Yeah, yeah, we get it
We love it
That endorphinal high
From you like, you virtual high five
But that’s not our definition

Pegged all pretty
Waving for attention
The breeze as you pass by
Leaving you asking
Connecting or not
Take your leave or stay awhile.
No dirty laundry please.

Posted in Inspirational & Observations from Life, People, Poetry and Prose

An online community

I think I have been blogging with WordPress for over 10 years. In the background of my life. It’s been great, the people I have met along the way. Take for example, Charlotte from The 365 Poetry Project. You can find her blog here:

https://365poetryproject.wordpress.com/

A few years, I stumbled on her site. I don’t know how. That’s the think about the blogging world. Sometimes, you just stumble upon one another.

(Granted. My pet peeve is the spam followers and likers. They don’t care about what you write. They just want traffic to their sites. BUT that will always be. You learn to just filter them out.)

Charlotte’s daily poem inspired me so much that I decided a few years back that I would do a poem series during Lent. Here is where you can find the first one:

https://darrelhoff.wordpress.com/of-poetry/poem-1-flyer/

Charlotte even send me a poem of her books, once, a few years back. I believe I had won it somehow from her site.

We have never met in person, and we probably won’t meet, unless she visits the UK or I visit the US. But that’s really not the point. I am just impressed by the solidarity in the online world. (There is still some of that)

I got this comment from Charlotte, the other day, saying that she had purchased my book:

I was super chuffed! She ordered my book. I didn’t even ask her to. She just did. How nice! On that note, I wrote a book. You can find it on amazon here:

And you can watch the promo video here:

So, thank you Charlotte. And thank you to the online community. 🙂

Posted in Inspirational & Observations from Life, People

Old and New

“All is quiet on New Year’s Day,” the soulful voice of Bono comes through the bluetooth speaker. They sit there, not wanting to fill the moment with their own words. The orange juice goes down well. The fried breakfast hits the spot after a heavy night. Two friends reunited after so many years. A new day, a new year.

Looking back on the night before. They stood on a balcony of a nondescript third floor apartment that overlooked the Berlin city skyline. The buildings’ shadows peering out into the horizon. They and the residents seemed to be waiting with baited breath. The clock strikes 12. The sky explodes in an array of colour and life! As far as the eye can see, the city skyline has been transformed. The fireworks welcome the new year. It’s cold out there on that balcony. 4 degrees. But they’re alive! They feel it!


The buckets balance on each end of the stick that she has carried over her shoulders. Her back and legs ache. Yes, she is young. But a 9-year-old should never have to carry that weight. She has walked 4km from her home to the nearby well. To draw some water. She notices how some bottles lay abandoned on the dirt road outside the many tin covered shacks. “Too much Phuza” gogo would say. A new day, a new year.

The fire has been made. Her brother, Amandla, has made it. He’s only 7 but he beams as the crackling would succumbs to the flames. The rocks have been laid with the awaiting kettle. He grabs the water from his sister and fills the kettle. Soon they can welcome the year with a cup of tea and some porridge. A goat bleats on a hill nearby. It’s going to be a warm day. They’re alive! They feel it!


The birdsong welcomes them to the new day. The warmth of the duvet invites them to stay in longer. He places his hand on her belly. He feels the little kick. Two more months. Then they won’t have the luxury of these lie ins. A new day, a new year. A new life on the way.

A mellow night in. Sitting on the sofa, holding hands as the trumpet of Miles Davis fills the room. He sips on a merlot, she on a cup of tea. A distant firework cracks in the sky. In this very big world, they feel alone. But it’s okay. They’re alive! They feel it.


Happy New Year, everyone!

Posted in Faith & Church, Inspirational & Observations from Life

I’ve been thinking about this

I love thinking. My brain is always on the go. Sometimes I am dreaming forward. Sometimes I am feeling nostalgic. Sometimes I am doing the theology thing. Discovering and wondering and pondering and learning.

This is what I thought recently:

What sort of story have we landed in?
If we think about it… are you serious two people screwed ALL OF THIS up for us?
Adam and Eve.
Because of them, all this sin and brokenness and hurt and mess.
BECAUSE of TWO people!! Is that for real?
They sinned.
The rest of us are doomed….
We inherited this mess. We’re born into a broken world.

So that is the one thought. That is the one viewpoint.

Then i thought of this:
Imagine if everything was perfect.
No hurt, no brokenness, no mess.
Everything is as what it was meant to be!
Then what we be doing here on earth? Living in this eternal paradise. What would it involve? Surely not an unending church service… please no!
Or would it be an endless hallelujah (* that is a good song by the way, that Matt Redman)
But the point for me… is what would we do in paradise everyday? Would there by anything to create, to explore, to work towards?

So this is where THAT thought WENT:
Because we live in a fallen and broken world, there is something for us to do.
we earn our keep
we see problems, we create solutions
whether they’re smaller personal ones, or larger worldwide humanatiarian ones such as hunger and poverty and unrest.
these issues / these problems… activate People to Creatively Solve the issues.
Well at least start, in their lifetime.

On another note, we work hard, pay some bills, save some.. get to go on that holiday. We earn our way to that break. it’s our reward. it’s our treat. We’re thrilled when we get there.
So part of our this life.
is about striving to get something and somewhere.

About studying hard, getting the good grades
Creating
Making
Offering
Helping

If there was nothing to fix, nothing to earn, nothing to stive for.

If there was absolutely serenity, no hurt, no poverty, no brokenness, no hate, no problems AT ALL.

What would be doing??

the church is here to serve
the church is here to help
the church is here to give grace
etc etc etc

BUT if there was not SIN in the WORLD at all.
What would be doing here?

Seriously, does anyone else not think about these things?

I don’t have the answers.
I love the mystery of it.
I love that my finite brain cannot comprehend everything.

This i know. I am grateful for the gift of life. I am grateful I am here. I don’t take good health for granted. relationship makes sense. I long for it. it’s in us.
And while we are here on earth – if we get to create, bring good, help others. then we should.

Posted in Inspirational & Observations from Life

The Thing about Loneliness

the thing about loneliness
is that the one experiencing it, often feels
like
they’re the only one
we ask, why me?
why is this so difficult?

truth is, that
loneliness,
sadly is a worldwide thing
knowing that brings a certain solidarity,
weirdly…
But it doesn’t take the difficult feelings away

there is loneliness in workplaces
there is loneliness in schools
there is loneliness is solitude
there is loneliness in zoom meetings
there is loneliness in airports
there is loneliness in marriages
there is loneliness in friendships

recently, I heard this advert, not sure what company it is:
they suggest: “make that call”
we can stop loneliness
(something like that?)
I liked it
something simple, something practical
and also as the #dudewithsign says:
reply to that text

dear connected people,
reach out to those who are lonely
send a text
make that call
don’t assume things
give quality time
take someone for a walk
go for a coffee
do something thoughtful

dear lonely people,
reach out to people
put on the radio
answer the damn phone
go for a walk, appreciate the birdsong, the fresh air
give people time
don’t hermit yourselves
and there is a difference between being alone
and being lonely
know the difference

the thing about loneliness, is that it’s a worldwide thing
but often, it doesn’t need to be a permanent thing,
it’s passing

Posted in Poetry and Prose

Three Words

These three words swirl around in my head: Expectancy, Anticipation and Prepare.


There is an expectancy to my steps and my thoughts.
I expect something deeper this year.


My anticipation and wonder, hold hands.
This year someone else will get it!
Will get what?
That Jesus loves them so dearly.
That Jesus is so real.
Awoken.

This year, may I be more prepared.
May I prepare my heart.
My posture, pace and purpose.
May I go at least 1% deeper in faith than last year.
May not wake up on Christmas day, and only realise then… the significance of the CHRIST.

Thank you Jesus
Born in a stable
But so much more
Born in my heart.

Posted in Inspirational & Observations from Life

Stuck in a room…?

Last night, I was able to capture this photo:

I am thankful that I can see such glorious sunsets from my room upstairs.
In the last few days, I have had to self isolate, because over a week ago, I was around someone who tested positive for covid19.
So as a precaution (all these guidelines we are following…) I have to stay at home, away from people.

The radius of my moment has been very limited.
A thought popped into my head.

Anne Frank and her family.

They had to hide in an attic (annex) in for a very long time.
Now that’s definitely a confined space!
And she didn’t get to see any sunsets.

Puts thing into perspective.


These are some of the things I think about, that’s why I keep a blog. Thanks for visiting 🙂

Posted in Inspirational & Observations from Life

Megaphone of Beauty

It’s like we’re juggling many balls at one time,
Hoping that we won’t drop any
Yet still remaining marvelled by it all
Our attention being tugged at like a yo-yo

They carve out the pumpkins
Put pretty lights in them
Just for a night
Trick or treat
The waste of it haunts me
And the ones that spend the most
Complain the most “why can’t the council do more?

Lockdown 2.0
Is the sequeal we’re definitely not keen on
But what it is, exactly, we don’t know?
The roads are still busy!
And yet someone, loses a loved one tonight…
Human beings raving on about how smart they are,
No need for a Higher Power…
But they can’t solve this, not even the cleverest mind?

It’s like someone put on a sprinkler on in the nightime sky
of the 5th of November
The water from that sprinkler boasting many colours!
The poor dogs cower under beds, hoping the night goes quickly

We will remember them, we will remember them
A tradition here so deep in the people
The old man sits in his rocking chair
Haunted by memories of screams and gunfire

An awfully lot of fighting has gone down
Every year, new wars, new victims
Fighting for a seat
Fighting for power
Fighting of different races
Lives matter
We are matter
Dust to dust, we are
Humble yourselves, dear jar of clay

Speaking of remembering,
I see the orange moon peel through the blackened sky
God’s megaphone of beauty, begging:
Don’t forget Me, don’t forget Me.

the moon looked so pretty… this photo doesn’t do justice…

I tried to take a photo
But it never comes out right,
Remind me of the Relient K song: