To the Poets,
Just write. Don’t think too much to start with. Just write.
Or do think too much. Think so much that your brain zeros in on the exact thought that will act like a piece of broken glass. Stay thinking, but write. Write that thought and write all around it until you find the precise angle it can be held at to best catch the sun. Stay writing and let the sunlight bear down through that angle-tipped thought for as long as it takes until your heart bursts into flames.
And then take your flaming heart and write some more. Write about anything and all of it. Let Him direct your gaze. Let it fall on things you’ve never seen before, even though, of course, you’ve seen them a million times before. Close your eyes and breathe in deeply, and look again at the things He wants to show you. Then write it.
Put some skin on your thoughts so that others can reach out and touch them, too. Write with your whole heart in the heat moment. You can always go back later and sift out the melodrama, but passion can’t be faked, at least not convincingly. And who can stomach falseness anyway?
Write about the big, scary abstracts, like redemption and glory and love. Write about the darkness, both the good kind that makes you stronger and the other kind that takes you years to climb all the way out of.
Draw on the sensual realm. What would His kindness feel like, if you ran your fingertips over it? If sadness was a pebble, what colour would it be? And would it skip across the surface of a river if you threw it just right? If anger was a food in your fridge, how would it taste? And if madness was a song playing on the radio, how loud would it be?
Don’t let yourself fall into the trap of feeling like the detail is nonsense. Decide instead, to believe it is beauty. Dismiss those who are compelled to reduce the world simplistic formulas and bullet-point lists – that is not for you. You were born to revel in the wonder of complexity and know it is His design. Discover paradox, it is your natural home.
Be just wild enough to believe that He still speaks to His prophets today and be assured that His prophets have always been poets. Wear the calling around your neck as if it were a necklace. You may need to reach for it and twist it between your fingers now and then. That’s ok. But don’t take it off.
Choose to be one of those (and if need be, the only one of those) who travels, perched on His shoulder. Whisper in His ear and lean forward to catch the words He speaks under His breath and out of the corner of His mouth. Learn to see differently from up there. Be brave enough to feel differently, up there.
And then write it. Always write it. Write it all down.