Black Raspberries: A Summer Poem

Black Raspberries: A Summer Poem July 5, 2017

It’s important for those of us who do advocacy and activism on behalf of this planet to take deliberate and intentional time to immerse ourselves in the sacredness of Creation.  This is a poem I wrote capturing the experience of an evening summer walk hunting for black raspberries – being led, following a Call.

wild_black_raspberries

Black Raspberries: A Summer Poem

I’m sorry I did not answer the phone when you called.

I was picking black raspberries

along the hedgerow.

Little clusters of

dark

purple

fruit

peeked out

from behind jagged green leaves

and thorns that stung like tiny bees

and scratched my skin

with mischievous kitten claws.

A small pain to pay for

bursts

of tangy juice in my mouth.

Moth. Photo credit: Leah D. Schade

I’m sorry I did not answer the phone.

As I picked the berries,

a moth displayed his splayed speckled wings,

pointing the way to another cluster of berries

just over the rise.

Black raspberries staining fingers. Photo credit: Leah D. Schade

 

Fingers marked with the color of setting sun

gingerly reaching

lifting

plucking

popping

the handfuls into my jacket pocket

that looked like I had bled into the fabric.

Sharing is worth the stains.

Firefly. Photo credit: Ching Ching Tsui, some rights reserved. https://www.flickr.com/photos/chingchingtsui/

I’m sorry I did not answer.

The fireflies silently blinked their light-chorus,

a symphony of soundless phosphorescence.

The Conductor unseen.

My eyes had to listen.

 

Truth: I am not sorry.  I did not answer you.

I answered another Call.


leah schade, profile (2)

Leah D. Schade is the Assistant Professor of Preaching and Worship at Lexington Theological Seminary (Kentucky) and author of the book Creation-Crisis Preaching: Ecology, Theology, and the Pulpit (Chalice Press, 2015).

Leah will be presenting at the Wild Goose Festival in Hot Spring, NC, July 14 and 15!  Her session info is available here:  http://wildgoosefestival.org/sessions17-24/.  Enter the special code BEMYGUEST for a 25% discount on tickets!

You can follow Leah on Twitter at @LeahSchade, and on Facebook at  https://www.facebook.com/LeahDSchade/.

 


Photo credits:

Moth. Photo credit: Leah D. Schade

Black raspberries staining fingers. Photo credit: Leah D. Schade

Firefly. Photo credit: Ching Ching Tsui, some rights reserved. https://www.flickr.com/photos/chingchingtsui/

 

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  • barbara w kiser

    Delicious! I can feel the dampness beneath my feet, taste the berries…even feel the branch’s pricks. Thank you so much.

    • You’re very welcome! I’m glad the poem could help re-create that experience for you!