A Face on a Train

She’s just another face on a passing train,

searching for a smile when she reaches her station.

But there’s no destination on her ticket,

there is no one waiting for her on the platform.

You see, she’s on the one way train that never stops.

She’s on the one way train that never stops.

 

She sits on the train going nowhere.

The blank ticket is clenched in her fist.

She struggles to remember that far away name

of that station from where she came,

and to where she’s going

on that train that never stops.

 

Her face flashes past station after station,

Never slowing down,

Never speeding up.

Different Strangers claim the seat next to her.

Different Faces claim her heart.

There was the freckled-face girl and the sun-kissed boy.

She laughed with the girl and giggled with the boy.

But sooner or later, as they always do,

That freckled-face girl and that sun-kissed boy

Found their stations and on the platform was the smile.

 

And she sits on the train going nowhere.

The useless ticket clenched in her fist.

She struggles to remember that far away name

of that station from where she came,

and to where she’s going

on that train that never stops.

 

The tracks stretch endlessly before her.

The tunnels are forever dark and bleak.

The empty seats surround her,

every one of them filled with ghosts from her past.

Broken promises crackle over the speakers.

Fresh wounds cause pain to her back,

as the train speedily carries her away

down, down, down its rusted track,

and she finally realizes that

her metal train can never stop.

 

Anger furrows her brow as she

rips the false ticket to bits.

One tear for the cowardly boy.

Two for forgotten promises hanging in the air.

Three for the ghosts suffocating her.

Four for the friend who forgot—

That wily freckled-faced girl who forgot.

 

Alone she sits on the train going nowhere.

The useless ticket shredded to bits.

She’s forgotten the name, ‘cause it’s so far away,

of that station from where she came,

and to where she’s going.

She’s on that train that can’t ever stop.

 

With a loud cry she sinks to the cold, hard floor

joining that ruined ticket on the ground.

Resentment, Bitterness, Pain swell up inside her chest,

and come bursting out in the form of lonely tears.

 

And the ghosts press forward,

And the secrets grow louder,

And the tunnels will never end.

She cries and cries and cries among

the ruins of her ticket.

Salty, thick tears flood her face.

Hot, painful tears blind her eyes.

Wet, thick hair sticks to her hands.

Yet she sees every face and feature

of the Faces and Strangers who left her.

 

She was not wrong for crying for so long.

She was not shallow, whinny, or weak.

For she stared every Face and Stranger in the eye

and and them “Why?”

 

Why did you leave me on the one way train going nowhere?

You knew this ticket was useless in my fist.

You knew I struggled to remember my own name.

Could you not look at me and see?

I promise to no longer hide.

Will you stop and stay with me?

 

How long she must wait for an answer she’ll never know;

maybe someday her soul might heal.

The Faces of the Forgetting can never fade from her sight,

but each new tear heals her painful heart.

 

Raising her head, she looks at her ghosts.

They return to their empty seats around her.

Their vocal secrets become a background noise

as the throbbing pain in her back fades.

With tired arms she pulls herself up and picks a new chair,

the empty one whose back used to face her.

Tired yet determined, she gazes out her window

as the barren landscape flashes passed,

and thinks that this one-way train,

that barrels away,

it will, someday, stop.

Fighting for My Dream

A dream is easy to have when things are going your way. It’s in the moments when nothing seems to be working out that we are faced with the question of, “How badly do I want this dream to come true?” We can say that it wasn’t what it was all cracked up to be, that we want a new dream instead. There’s nothing wrong with changing our minds, if that is what we really want. Or we can stick it out and fight for it.

For the first time, I have to fight for the life I want to have. I’m lucky because I had an easy upbringing; my parents loved me, I had everything a child needs to succeed and then some. But now, now that the protection of schooling is over I have to make a choice that will affect the rest of my life. It’s up to me to provide for myself; no more hand holding.
I have to fight for the life I want to life. I want to live out God’s will for my life, true, but that does not mean I can lounge around the house, surf the net and watch Netflix to my heat’s content as I “wait” for God to show up and tell me what to do. I have to leave the house and actively look for ways to achieve my dream, because it’s not going to show up on the latest Netflix show I’m watching. The only way to know what doors are open is to try and go through them, instead of waiting for a feeling to tell me what to do, because more often than not that “feeling” tells me, “Just one more episode. You can try that door later, after you get a snack.”
Adventuring Note: This was written at the end of this past summer when I began to doubt myself. I began to wonder if I had picked the right career or if it was simply a college pipe dream. About two weeks later, a door was opened in the industry I dared believe I could join, and I excitedly and nervously walked through it.

He Knows Me, and He Still Loves Me

Psalm 139:1: “Oh Lord, you have searched me and know me.”

Praise the Lord!

He wanted to know me, so He found me.

He learned all about who I was, who I am, and who I will become.

He knows my faults better than anyone, better then even me.

He knows the parts I am ashamed of and the secrets hidden away.

Yet, He loves all of me without a thought of regret or shame.

When I am lost in the valley of the shadow of death, He loves me.

When I procrastinate leaving the beauty of the mountain top, He loves me.

When I stubbornly insist to live life my way, He loves me.

When I admit I need His help, He loves me.

He wants me. He knows me. He unconditionally loves me.

Praise the Lord!