A Christian Angle on Joyful Bitterness

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A Christian Angle on Joyful Bitterness

Because life goes on, until it doesn’t

Getting old,
well, older anyway,
among its benefits,
joyful bitterness.

Bad as that might
sound to those of you
younger and still
full of hope,
we older ones learn
hard realities
that only time
can teach us.

For instance,
in their DNA
have paltry limitations,
built-in expiration dates.
Also our capacity for sexual delusions
is not, indeed, endless.

Allow me to present a pair
of examples of what leads to
joyful bitterness
on a Christian Express train to perdition.


My ‘best’ friend
for half a century
is now grotesque,
ugly in his soul.

It’s not a single thing
that can be described by a single example,
it’s a rotting at the core of himself
a deep lie at the center of his being,
the friendship cannot go on
I won’t allow it.

Life has forced its permanent closure;
there is no alternate route
as we get older it gets worse and worse.

But wait!

Maybe age is not the issue at all;
maybe it’s more of a
wisdom thing,
an ancient knowledge, even,
always there
but avoided for decades
until it becomes
impossible to ignore?

In fact, the biggest change in him
has been his turn to
prosperity gospel
and his recent self-assurance
of eternal Christian salvation
despite his lifetime of cruelty,
and avarice.

He reminds me of serial killer,
strapped to a gurney in a Texas prison,
smiling benignly over his certainty
that god has forgiven him
all his sins and will be
welcoming him home
as soon after the needle
has finished it’s work.

Oh for the blessings of being
Thank You Jesus!


I lift a glass of whiskey to my lips
and stare at the perfect ass
and big boobs
of a lovely/sexy woman
passing by.

She doesn’t glance my way
and if she did
I’d be invisible to her.

She may not be
thinking about her striking
or about, just now,
flicking her head so her long
shiny hair obeys her command
to keep a view of her face
unobstructed —

Or she may be
thinking exactly about
how sexy she is?

She’s a woman, after all
and songs,
have been
forever and always will be
devoted to her slightest whims —

That is, if
she looks this gorgeous.

Ahhhhh . . . but now I see it:
she wears a tiny, shiny, adorable gold cross
on chain around her perfect neck,
hanging down into an ample
cleavage framed in
soft pastel baby-blue
of her V-neck sweater —
such purity!
such a soft, smooth, invitation!

Is my age the thing that
shows me this truth?
Or simply
the terrible accumulation of
such experiences;
because I’ve seen
this woman, or one just like her,
a hundred, a thousand, tens of thousands of times.
And this morning as she walks
staring at her phone
and perhaps
she Tweets simple thoughts
her sentimental notions
about love, her cat(s), her favorite drink
the prettiness of rainbows
the unfairness of a friend
or her sad, sad day —

And we men,
seeing her flick her hair away,
regardless of our age or status
our wealth/fame/muscles/lack thereof
regardless of any and all else,
stop whatever we’re doing
and we tweet our regards,
our sympathies
our admiration,
our kind words
our deepest
re-tweet her vapid
as if they matter
to us.
We “Favorite” all her tweets
as if they
matter greatly. Greatly!
you never know. . .

Joyful bitterness
comes from
finally seeing/hearing,
that have always been
right in front of us
but that
for whatever
combination of reasons
we somehow managed
to not quite notice
until we do.

It has taken time to learn
that honesty
always comes with a price,
that directness often
leads to some loss —
and that age has little to do with it
other than the truth
that it takes decades to attain
through then gentle joys
of bitterness,
we’d rather not have to
know at all.

Jesus Trash
Photo by Eric Ward on Unsplash
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