The Parentheses

By Elaine Knudtson

20190809_103126Why won’t I weep when your child is born knowing his ultimate end?

Life is but a parentheses in the cosmic story, begun when the stars were flung into place.

The Almighty Word and Spirit danced in a kaleidoscope of humor, colour and sound,

Conjuring the skylark, zebra, octopus and rose.

Incomplete as a nursery without a child, we were conceived and born into time,

Free to think and choose and forget.

Loved risked rejection for the brief moments of our gratitude and praise.

Broken by mortality, we yearn for happiness as the sky darkens and the glory dies.

But shards of hope pierce the thunderclouds, removing the final parenthesis.

I will join in the cosmic dance; hope redeemed in glory.

And that is why I will laugh when your child is born.

Part the Waters Lord

By Elaine Knudtson


Today my sister goes in for another chemo treatment.  It takes me back to my own journey over a decade ago and I relive the anxiety.

“We hold these treasures in clay pots to show that the absolute power belongs to God and not ourselves.  We are often troubled but not crushed, sometimes in doubt, but not despair.  There are many enemies, but we are not without a friend, and though badly hurt at times, we are not destroyed.” 2 Cor. 4:7-9

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” Jer. 29:11

If we could see the end from the beginning, it would perhaps be easier to trust and have faith.  We would know that ultimately “all things work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to His purpose.” Rom. 8:28

“When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;

And when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.

When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned;

The flames will not consume you.” Is. 43:2



My beautiful picture


“I Remember” – for Karen

I crawl into a ball and weep..

Why?  I can’t even ask.  I sit in silence.  No words come.

To think is too painful; the wound too deep, the scab too fresh.

I’m surrounded by this death.

The stench of fear fills my nostrils and I can’t smell the fragrance of the flowers

My tears cloud my eyes and I can not see the smile of a child

My hands are tightly clenched and I cannot feel the softness of God’s touch on my cheeks.

I cannot hear “I love you” when I am deaf to life because of my pain.

Coldness, tightness, intensity.

It will never end. 

I faint away and release the pain.

I feel nothing.


Then, I forget my hurt for a moment and laugh.

I notice the silver on the willow in the rain.

I hear the harmony of the birds and the river as if for the first time

An unexpected visit, a call from a beloved friend, a kind gesture from a stranger—angels unaware.

The infinite time gives way to the rhythm of the day and I inhale the cool air once again.

Slowly hope returns, and the way through becomes clearer as I emerge from the fog.

I can’t look back because it is dark and will always be dark and there will never be anything there but pain.

I have heard your voice in the night.20190804_113808

The warmth of your love enfolds me,

I see your pain in the midst of my own as we

Walk through the baptism of death into the light of the resurrection.