Tag Archives: storm

The reflection of the light


I took this photo in Louisville some years back. I don’t remember the exact date. My friend John and I had been at his health club. He did yoga; I walked the treadmill. We came out to the aftermath of a storm and I got this photo of the moon appearing amidst clouds. In the darkness of the foreground, tree branches appear.

I posted the photo as my cover photo on Facebook a day or so ago. My friend Leslie observed, “Such darkness.”

She is right.

But as I looked at the photo and pondered her words it occured to me that while there is darkness, there is also the moon and the moonlight.

The darkness, profound as it is, cannot put out the light.

Indeed such darkness cannot even put out the reflection of the light.

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Filed under Friends, Louisville, Photo

The Until We Meet Again Tour – August 14, part 2

The Until We Meet Again Tour had always planned a trip to the Hudson River to take photos at sunset. Tonight I walked to Harlem Piers for that purpose. The weather had other ideas. The storm rolled in as I arrived. I beat a hasty retreat, spent a few minutes huddled with some others under an awning, and did not get too wet.

But another trip appears in order.


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Filed under New York, Photo

The kindness of friends

The last two days provided a reminder of the importance of a network of friends.

The lesson began Friday morning. I had traveled to Louisville for a week of staff meetings. Friday’s involved all the staff members of the Presbyterian Mission Agency.

Worship opened the day. A celebration of the year’s highlights followed. Then came the recognition of our colleagues for years of service.

This played out against a weather forecast that as early as Wednesday called for bad weather. Some staff members from out of town chose to change their airline tickets early Friday morning. I did not.

The weather warnings continued as the day progressed. During the first workshop, leadership made the decision. We heard the announcement that the staff day was suspended. We could leave. The building would close at 3:00.

After one last conversation and a quick lunch, I tried to change my flight. It proved a fruitless endeavor. I decided to go to the airport and see what happened there.

I arranged to stay with Sara and John Lisherness if I could not leave. Ryan Smith took me to the airport. Some ice had accumulated. A cold icy, rain fell.

I checked in my flight. The weather deteriorated. Flights were cancelled. Snow began. Around 2:30, my plane was cancelled.

I booked a flight for today and then took a cab to John and Sara’s house where I spent a pleasant evening. As the snow piled up, the driver made his way to Willow. He even made it up the hill from Eastern Parkway. “Up the hill?” he asked. “Up the hill, sir,” I replied.

This morning, at 9:30 AM, John took me to the airport for a day’s travel adventure that ended around 8:00 PM.

Tricia began the trek from Cleveland to the Shire even earlier. She had an uneventful day, arriving at the Shire about 10:00 AM.

That is when her adventure began. The key I gave her would not work the lock. After numerous tries, she went to Max Caffe where she hung out for a while. When that got old, she came and sat in the lobby.

Ryan observed her plight on Facebook. He called James Porter. Tricia and James talked and made arrangements for him to meet her with a key. About 7:30, Tricia entered the Shire. I got in shortly thereafter.

An interesting day. A day of minor inconveniences. A day to remember our privileges. A day to give thanks for friends: Sara and John, Ryan and James. It is a blessing to have a community.

JulesJules offered amazing support as well while I was stuck in Louisville.

Of course he may have wanted my pizza.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Family, Friends, Travel

Facing down Nemo

New York WeatherI sit in warm comfort in Memphis, Tennessee, preparing for speaking gigs over the next two days. But my thoughts turns to New York City and the people of the Northeast.

Snowmageddon, in some form, has struck. Many people are or will be inconvenienced by the storm; some will be threatened: people who have no shelter, people still recovering from Sandy, and people who must, for whatever reason be outside. My heart aches with worry for my sisters and brother.

The invitation to visit Memphis came last fall. I purchased the ticket in December, scheduling the flight for Thursday.

Early last week, I pondered changing the ticket to leave New York today – Friday. The change fee proved more than I was willing to pay.

Only after I had decided not to change my ticket did I start paying attention to the weather. And I realized that I would still be in New York if I had made the change. Airlines had begun cancelling Friday flights by the time I arrived at LaGuardia on Thursday afternoon.

Part of me gives thanks that I made it to Memphis. I am with good people, eating too much good food, and having great opportunities to share about the Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations.

Part of me wishes I were in New York – as the city and the region deal with Nemo.

All of me wishes for safety for all people who are in the path of the storm.

All of me gives thanks for all people who care for sisters and brothers – going in harm’s way or providing shelter from the storm.

See you along the Trail.

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Filed under Current Events, Friends, New York, Presbyterian Ministry at the United Nations, Travel

Held at Midway

We neither
feel nor hear
the wind;
we remain
dry afar
from rain;
we safely
sit and wait
on board
as the storm
its fury
on New York
where journey
will end.

8 September 2012
Midway Gate B-3
Southwest 1945

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Filed under Poem, Travel


The lightning’s reflection
danced across the East River
as I looked from my office window.

Shadows, caused by lightning,
played across the uptown skyline
as I departed the 1 Train.

I smiled at the sky-show’s beauty
until I remembered
those whose work takes
them into the elements;
those with no home, no place, no shelter:
sisters and brothers
who ride out the storm

26 July 2012
Shire on the Hudson

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Filed under New York, Poem

Double rainbow

It is unclear why this has remained unposted for more than a year.
When it was taken, I was not in a posting groove.
At the end of 2010 summer, 
a little over a year ago,
Tricia and I visited
the Great Plains.
Our adventure began in Denver, the starting point for this year’s travels as well.
We drove north through Wyoming into Montana where we saw 
the Little Bighorn National Battlefield Monument,
cut east to Mt. Rushmore and the Badlands
turned south through Nebraska,
and ended back to Denver.
We saw a number of national parks
and visited a couple of zoos.
We also checked out some state parks and historic sites
including Fort Phil Kearney State Historic Site 
near Banner, Wyoming.
There we journeyed to the location 
of the Fetterman Fight.
While we walked the grounds where battle once ranged
a small storm developed.
It brought enough rain to create
this double rainbow.
See you along the Trail.
19 September 2011
Shire on the Hudson

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Making my way home

Water squishes from my socks
with each step I take through the station,
my pants restrict my movements,
clinging to my shins and thighs,

I trudge down the stairs and onto
the street; I walk through the rain
as though seeking a
wet Oxford shirt contest.

A white flash illuminates the sky,
glowing blue off the top of the subway car;
the sky rasps out
a deep, low rumble.

The storm exhausts its fury
while I make my way home
where I realize
how blessed I am.

19 August 2011
Shire on the Hudson

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