Thursday, June 22, 2006


It was a tough week in the CITY so this is a little something I wrote:

The C.I.T.Y
Makes me cry
And wonder why?
Urban dwellers
shuffle the poor like papers
we are...
still separated by the shade of face
every one knowing their place
we race
setting a pace with…
no grace.

We are all…
Stuck and F***ed
Needing to see the need
The need needing to be seen
The needy needing to be seen
acknowledged by those who go to college
and choose to use
the system to
unintentionally bruise
those who inevitably loose.

Straining like camels
hitting our humps
squeeee…zing through the gate
like a gnat
who is too FAT
You see...
distance is the key
close but not too
“Roll ‘em up!”
‘Keep clean!”
“Lock the doors”
“Is it safe?”

Deafened by distance, division, and disgust
Incarcerated by ignorance, indifference and individuality
Chained by choice, chocking our spirit
binding and winding and grinding
us and them up into self…
a paralytic contortion
of mind and spirit
with no relation, connection
simply isolation,
we are emaciated partners
needing nurtured nutrients
one from the other
busyness blurs
and blinds our beings

be still my soul!

smash and shatter the shackles
galvanize gentries without gentrification
bolster beauty without bureaucracy
garner generosity without greed
judge justly without jealousy
render restoration without relocation

may we be free to see
may we see you in thee
may we be you to thee
may they be thee to me


terrytimm said...

bro - this is potent stuff. we are exploring the power of touch this sunday in worship and on sunday evening a team is heading into the CITY to partner with Shepherd's Heart Church in their ministry to the broken and hurting. do you mind if I share this with our congregation?

Eileen said...

You should read that at the OD, or somewhere... but it definitely needs to be read outloud... I can feel the rhythm in it.

Lauren said...

BJ, this is incredible. The words roll smoothly, the anger and frustration is potent, the faith is raw and desperate and beseeching. I agree about this being read - it reads out loud, and I think it would be stronger if heard out loud.

Chris said...

Very well done - it leaves me not just thinking about it but feeling it - exactly how poetry is supposed to be.

bj woodworth said...

thanks guys - go ahead t-timm.

david said...

your good words lift like incense to our God who is the "restorer of streets" (isa 58:12) . . . Lord, have Mercy . . . Christ, have Mercy . . . Lord, have Mercy . . .

marlaena said...

thanks for sharing your prophetic and poetic voice with us bj. terry did a great job bringing your words to our ears yesterday . . . he read them so rhythmically it reminded me of a heartbeat and is our heart beating in sync with God's heart? you continue to fascinate me . . .

John said...

So... Terry, I just want to know if you dropped the F bomb in worship!

Karen said...

agreed - needs to be read. powerful.

the irony of how some folks (myself included) benefit from the system that tramples on so many others... are we really ready and willing to dismantle it piece by piece?

"busyness blurs/ and blinds our beings..."