Skip to main content

Poetry is an Accident on the Freeway

Poetry is an accident on the freeway
Poetry is frustration
A dreadful inconvenience
An obstacle that prevents you 
From getting where you want to go 
As fast as you expect to get there

An interruption to your regularly scheduled programming
A careless intervention 
Into your carefully structured life
Your blissful reverie broken
Your mobility halted or slowed

Forced to tail the bumper of the car in front
Forced to gaze upon someone else’s destruction
Forced to share in a collision
Poetry is a journey delayed
Poetry is personal invasion

The worst and the best at once
An opportunity to consider life and death
An invitation to think about someone else 
A chance to step outside yourself
Or to think about yourself from another’s perspective
Or to feel another’s pain
Or to stop and help
Or not

Poetry is waiting
Poetry is witness
There are others seeing the same scene
But they are irrelevant because 
The experience of the accident is your own
You interpret it as you were, are, and will be
For no one comes from the same place
And everyone is headed some place different
And all have varying expectations 
On how quickly they should get there
United by stoppage alone

And if you actually stopped at an accident
An image would be etched in your mind
But stopping would delay you further
For an accident prompts questions of bother

Why is the traffic stopping?
How dare this delay?
What is everyone looking at?
How did it happen?
Why can’t people be more careful?
Was there injury or death?
Whose fault was it anyways?
What are the stories of the parties involved?
As their fates have been inadvertently intertwined

But the questions fade once the accident is in the rear view mirror
After all now you’re past and can resume normal speed
Finally on your way to where you’re supposed to be
A wave of relief washes over as traffic flows
Speeding down the endless pavement of your consciousness


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

A Dad's Review of Passport 2 Purity

[3,100 words, 11 minute read]

The sex talk is one of the most dreaded conversations parents anticipate having with their children. To make things easier, an entire industry exists to help parents with sex education. Dozens of books have been written to help parents navigate this treacherous topic with their progeny. One of the best known among evangelicals is called the Passport 2 Purity Getaway package. It is produced by FamilyLife, a division of Cru (former Campus Crusade for Christ) and consists of a five lecture CD package including a journal and exercises designed as a weekend retreat for a pre-pubescent child and his/her parent(s).

Passport 2 Purity was not my initiative. Our trip came about because Judy had heard from several home-schooling mom friends how they had taken their daughters on a road trip to go through the CDs. She even heard how a mom took a trip with husband and two sons to through the curriculum. So a couple months ago, Judy suggested we take our two older boys o…

Planting a Church. Finally.

James Taylor, the great grandson of Hudson Taylor, the famed missionary to China who founded the China Inland Mission (now OMF) once said: “It is a tragedy so many foreign Chinese have left the evangelization of China up to the non-Chinese.”

James spoke those words over twenty-five years ago during a Chinese church retreat when I was a senior in high school. His calling out of the Chinese diaspora vis-a-vis white missionaries challenged and haunted me. This challenge was the impetus behind my plans to join Cru (formerly Campus Crusade for Christ) staff to do a one-year mission trip to China. But I didn’t go. Rather, I accepted an invitation from my hometown pastor, Tom Chow, to return to San Jose and reach my American-born Chinese peers.

After nine years of working as a project manager and volunteering with the youth group and young adult ministry, I joined the staff of my home church, Chinese Church in Christ - South Valley (South Valley) in 2006. In the summer of 2007, South Valley l…

Why Asians Run Slower

My brother got me David Epstein's book The Sports Gene. It is a fascinating quick read. If you're interested in sports and science, it will enthrall you. I finished it in three days.

Epstein's point is that far more of an athlete's performance is due to genetics than due to the so-called "10,000 hour" rule promulgated by books such as Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell and Talent is Overrated by Geoff Colvin (both which are very good). The 10,000 hour rule states that any person can reach expert level of performance in a sport if they devote 10,000 hours of deliberate and intentional practice. 
That's a lot of hours. Most people aren't capable of anywhere close. And that's precisely Epstein's point.
Someone who devotes 10,000 hours of sport-specific practice is likely genetically gifted for the sport in extraordinary ways AND genetically gifted in their ability to persevere and benefit from practice. Therefore, a person who can practice that much is…