The Lighter Side of JzB

Here you will find photos, poetry, and possibly some light-hearted foolishness. For the Heavier Side
of JzB
see my other blog,
Retirement Blues. (There be dragons!)

I claim copyright and reserve all rights for my original material of every type and genre.

Every day visits*
From Moose, Goose, and Orb Weaver
All seized by Haiku

"Why moose and goose?" you may ask. Back on 2/04/13 Pirate wrote a haiku with an elk in it, and I responded with
one with a moose and then included him every day. A few days later in comments Mystic asked "Where's the goose?"
So I started including her with this post on 2/07. A week later on the 14th, Mark Readfern
asked for and received a spider. The rest is history.

*Well, most days, anyway. Grant me a bit of poetic license.

Monday, October 23, 2017

Briars in the Garden

"Both read the Bible day and night; but you read black where I read white."
-- William Blake

I'm a little late to this one.  Checking the analysis of Blake's poem we find that he was protesting the biblical interpretations that the Anglican church was imposing on ordinary people, particularly regarding the repression of human sexuality.  I'm not a believer, but I was brought up in the Catholic church, had 12 years of religion classes, occasionally paid attention, and have some familiarity with the teachings of Jesus.   I find the beliefs and attitudes of American conservative christianity to be anti-scriptural, nihilist, judgmental, hypocritical, hate-based and intellectually offensive.  On the other hand I find the concepts and attitudes of progressive christianity to be enlightening and fulfilling.   If I were a believer, I would find them compelling.

So Blake's 1794 poem resonates with the religious landscape of 2017 America.  I went back to the shadorma again to express my thoughts and feelings.

Thistle Flowers

Where is love?
Have grabbed it;
Transformed it
To judgment and damnation
Out of hate.


Where is God,
That loving father?
In Crown thorns?
Does he bind his love for us
In brambles?


Salvation -
What then does it mean
If they change
All the good
Into the coffers of a 
Mega church?


Oh, no - I exceeded the 12 line limit! 
Lo siento. 
At least they are short.


  1. I was brought up in the Lutheran church of Sweden, and I find some of the beliefs that rely on the Gospel of prosperity being very far from the church I was brought up with... so I agree with you.

  2. Oh, I so know these thistle flowers. I spent years in a Southern Baptist Church..Finally I had to spirit was dying.

  3. I like the way you have written each shadorma under the theme of thistles - each with its own angle (angel?)

  4. Hopefully, in the end, it's all about the search. That we searched and asked questions - lethargy this poem does not display!

  5. Yes, sad that Blake's message is still so relevant.


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