After the Cross

August 14, 2010

after the cross
under the blood
all darkness removed
in light’s holy flood

promise unfolding
blemish erased
beauty from dust
glory and grace

nothing between us
me and my Lord
all sweet communion
sinner restored

walking together
sit at His feet
rest in this mercy
life now complete

often I find myself
standing without
wiping my feet again
suffering doubt

forgetting forgiveness
living like lost
yet offered communion
after the cross

©Erin Kilmer, 2010


Written in response to LL Barkat’s post “When Did We Get ‘Spiritual Practice’ Stuck?



July 21, 2010

all this
weight and beauty
above me
–and i so small–
how shall i ever
find words to express it all?

©Erin Kilmer, 2010


July 14, 2010

Mama, Mom, Mommy
some days this is all I am
or so it would seem

Mama, Mom, Mommy
I am more than a mother
sometimes I forget

Mama, Mom, Mommy
and wife and lover and friend
dare I say writer

Mama, Mom, Mommy
and sister, daughter, and aunt
teacher and student

Mama, Mom, Mommy
and child of God, beloved
bought with His own blood

Mama, Mom, Mommy
more than a mother; I’m what
He made me to be


©Erin Kilmer, 2010

Number four in my Baby Words series.


July 5, 2010

by Erin Kilmer

and oh, You are mercy,
love, grace.

when sin’s curse would ravage our hearts,
stealing all hope for any tomorrow,
leaving us bereft, defeated, alone–

You step in then,
plead scars of nails,
death’s destroyers.

never without hope, Your people.
never without a forever of tomorrows
waiting just beyond sunrise.

we hide in hope, in Your rest.

and oh, You are mercy,
love, grace.

Behind the Cross

July 4, 2010

and this is a mighty God–
God thundering above loudest waterfall,
shaking earth with just a flick of finger,
coming upon mankind with black-cloud fury–
raising waves, pouring rain, shouting wind–
all holy power brought to bear
in justice against filthy sinful man.

and you stand trembling
watching wrathful storm front towering before you,
waiting for black clouds to explode–
lightning to fire forth–
deserving of this mighty holy judgment.

but this is a merciful God–
in one moment, everything awesome and holy and eternal
pressed into dying flesh,
thorn-crowned, nail-pounded, crucified–
all the pure power, just wrath hurled at you
landing, instead, on God made man.

stand you then, behind the cross,
or kneel down perhaps, or fall flat–
seeing the fullness of holiness and love
all for you.

and this is your God–
all His greatness and might
shielding you, protecting you, defending you now,
behind His cross.

rest then in peace.

mighty holiness loves you.


Inspired by David’s song in 2 Samuel 22 and today’s discussion in Sunday School.


June 29, 2010

Erin Kilmer

I am here, there,
it seems some days

where I want to be
humming with the churn
of the dishwasher
and spinning around
dizzy in the laundry

and they are calling me
with glue bottles stuck shut
and scraped
knees and lost cups
and I am here with them

what I wanted
but dizzy, still, and hurrying

clatter on the table
with the plates and knives
and jug of milk
and when will Daddy be home

did you brush your teeth,
change your socks,
don’t wrestle in the living
room because I am here
wrestling with the pots and pans

and each day we are here,
and there, library, park,
hiding in the basement, sweeping
the floor and folding blankets

and it is me with
them and them with
me and that is what is meant,
what we are meant for,
never easy but worth it

water the tomatoes, knead
our daily bread and read living
Words and clear the table so
it can be a shipyard again until dinnertime

three meals around this table every day
and we grow, they grow, with
buttered toast and eggs scrambled
whisk falling on the floor, on
the baby

am I coordinated enough for this dance

I will find my footing,
and we will all be together
ringing round rosies and doing
all these good things while my head spins,

dizzy with all I have to do,
dizzy with all they teach me,
dizzy with grace

June 3, 2010

It is my weakness, this I know.

It is my flesh that looks at this shadow
and sees solid fear-bricked wall.

My flesh that cannot see beyond this curtain–
this thin and gauzy veil.

My selfish heart sees only this lonely place,
my hot tears running down and breaking heart.

I see pain and fear and just the unknown alone–
my flesh the fool, my heart the weakling.

Oh, cover me in grace and mercy,
for I am weak and afraid.

Take this selfish from my heart, and give me peace
and joy for one who comes closer to Your presence.

Oh to be with You now, with You,
on the other side, waiting for Your redeemed to join us,

instead of here, watching and fearing as one I love
steps closer day by day to eternity.

But I am here, now, living, alive, in this life not yet everlasting,
in a home alive with young vibrant life,

and You are here now, guiding me my Shepherd,
just as You guide all Your beloved through the shadow.

Oh, flesh, dying day by day, you will not triumph.
Death is swallowed up in victory,

and you will not conquer me with fear
or with anger or bitterness because

this flesh and this earth and this dying
cannot hold His redeemed down.

I will weep, yes, and grieve, and mourn,
because this is night and shadow and pain,

but joy comes in the morning, Son rising,
and these goodbyes we say are never forever,

but He is and home is and life is,
when pain and tears and partings part.

Oh guide me, carry me, carry us,
for we need You, Conqueror of the grave.

You are Strength in weakness, this I know.

Erin Kilmer


May 16, 2010

by Erin Kilmer

I have walked
in imaginary skies
amid sparkling star-gems,
wearing moondust as a cloak
and sunfire as a crown.

I have withered
in dungeons of my own creation,
behind bars of words
eating only scraps of
commas for my bread.

I have waited
in dark rooms imagined
with a candle for my light,
soft feet shod with
satin slippers.

I have wandered
through illusory vineyards
thick and heavy with fruit
dancing in dark juices
staining my feet with purple.

I have wondered
at the worlds my mind creates
when I daydream
where I am princess crowned
or pauper condemned.

I am wiser
now, for coming out of
dreams I find myself
in Your beauty always
more sparkling than my imagination.


May 2, 2010

My sin
is an Olympic-sized
swimming pool,
overflowing with
filth and murk and mess.

His grace
is Niagara Falls,
crashing down upon me
washing it all away in a moment,
and still always flowing down.



***”But where sin abounded, grace abounded much more . . .” (Romans 5:20b)***

Dust Walking

April 12, 2010

I am dust walking–
dust with a heart of new flesh
where once cold stone beat.

Blood turns dust to flesh.
Dust and rock circulate life;
stone catches its breath.

Time passes and grace,
flowing red on walking dust,
quickens barren dirt.

Less dust– less hard stone–
more grace-blood– more living flesh–
blow the dust away.

What remains is real:
life, blood, flesh, bone– all things new.
dead passes to death.