Wednesday, August 23, 2017

“Poems of Worship” by Jacqueline Mayfield

If you’re unfamiliar with the Book of Psalms in the Old Testament, you might think they’re only about praise. Generally, that’s their purpose. But they’re also about worship, about celebration, and about both the depths and the heights of human experience. David, who wrote many of the psalms, ran the gamut of emotions and experiences, from intense joy to dark depression, and from wild celebration to fear and despair. And the psalms reflect all of those things.

It’s likely why the psalms sound so contemporary. We resonate with what they describe.

Poet and writer Jacqueline Mayfield has published a similar collection of poems, ones that also range from the heights to the depths. The 32 poems of Poems of Worship cover life’s storms and joys, personal struggles, doubt, temptations, God’s strength and love, the poet’s own failures, overcoming the past, looking to the future, forgiveness, and the day-to-day reality of what it means to be a Christian.

Mayfield writes in simple language, using style that makes her[poems sound like a conversation with God.

You Protect Me

When I am walking in the dark
With no light to guide me
On this path in life
I try will all my might
To keep you in sight
Even when I turn the wrong
Way I know you protect me
You set me free from bondage
That had trapped me in
My own mind
You protect me
When I go through
My storms in life
Your umbrella of love
Keeps me dry and
I no longer
Have any tears to cry
You protect me from my enemies
That try to steal my joy
And when they
Play with me
Like I am nothing but a toy
You protect me and
I am grateful each day
And I feel secure
In your love that is so pure

Jacqueline Mayfield
The poems share this essentially free verse form, but with occasional rhyming lines like the ones ending in “might” and “sight.” To read it aloud is to listen to the conversation she’s having.

Mayfield is a freelance writer and poet who’s been writing poetry since she was 12. She is also the author of A Better Tomorrow: Poems (2017) and is working on her third collection of poetry. She lives in Hampton, Virginia.

The poetry of Poems of Worship comes from a childlike heart. And that is exactly the heart God is looking for.

Top photograph by Alex Wigan via Unsplash. Used with permission.

1 comment:

Michele Morin said...

Great to learn about a new (to me) poet!
Thanks, Glynn!