Saturday 9 October 2021



This newly-minted teen is blessed with the surety that she holds all the keys to the universe and the stubbornness to try them all in the lock rather than believe anyone who tells her which one opens a particular lock. She is becoming adept at questioning the boundaries before pushing up against them to see if they will hold. Her mouth is still more likely to smile than disrespect. Her eyes more familiar with creasing in laughter than filling with tears; they sparkle with a newly developing sense of self and twinkle with a secret future. Not yet tested or broken, her heart beats to the rhythm of her violin, her flute, or her voice. She is exactly what we hoped she would be wrapped up in all the surprises we didn’t expect. 

Happy Birthday Athena,

your laughter remains the most beautiful music you offer this world.

Wednesday 11 August 2021

Day by Day

One by one (sometimes by two)
my leaves change 
so do you
not all at once 
as often prayed
but day 
by day 
by day 
by day
by God my God and God alone
who sits upon His heavenly throne
one by one my leaves will fall
until I’ve lost them one and all
I’ll stand naked in the wind
and catch the snow when it begins
look! already you can see
my leaves preparing to leave me
it’s August yet the signs are there
the change of life is in the air
the nights no longer hold the heat
seasons are set on looped-repeat
give no thought dear have no care
enjoy my foliage while it’s there
just like I”m changing, 
so are you
by God my God makes you anew
my leaves, your sins He takes away
day by 
day by 
day by 
like me you’ll stand there in the wind
stripped bare admit it! You have sinned!
you’ll bow your limbs against the cold
onto your knee you’ll bend and fold
like me you’ll yield your will to His
there is no other way than this
until you’re more like Him than not
’til nakedness is all you’ve got
then he’ll clothe you as He does
with grace and faith and hope and love
then the fruits will start to bud
from underneath the dirt and crud
not all at once but one by one
that’s how our Saviour’s work is done.

- Vera Patterson

Sunday 1 August 2021

Mama’s Children

Bleary-eyed Mama peels 
creased cheek from 
tear-soaked pillow
simultaneously shushing the child 
inside and outside herself until 
one of them is satiated by the breast
she empties
into its eager mouth 
all the while
wishing there was
from whom she could
make lusty demands 
like baby 
Mama needs someone 
she can
to nourish her.

Mama traces circles gently
on her baby’s
until bubbles of
air come up
and out
all the while
wishing there was 
to coax the painful things
secretly hidden
deep within
into the open so the
discomfort she lives
with can be

Mama shifts her baby
the tender head
wishing there was
she could reveal all the soft
vulnerable places of herself
knowing that someone would
love her more for knowing
Mama needs extra care in
the places
 where she isn’t finished

Mama opens the diaper
wrinkling her nose
at the smell
yet wishing there was
who acknowledged 
but didn’t turn away
or shame her for
the less pleasant parts
of her
that need
to be wiped clean, aired out, 
and like Mama
that someone would have to 
do it again and again
until she

Mama wraps her baby 
wishing there was
with whom she could
feel warm,
secure, loved
that someone
would keep her safe
like baby Mama feels
scared and alone

Mama moves slow
through the house 
mentally calculating
when baby will need her next
the child she pushed aside
inside begins to
Mama falls 
on the dry pillow
and allows the child to 
wet it again.

- Vera Patterson

Sunday 25 July 2021


My feet have strayed 
from hallowed ground
the flames are closing
all around

I need you Lord
yes I believe
that I have sinned
I was deceived

I wanted something
not of you
as often we
mere mortals do

I run around
I scream and shout
But find there is just
no way out

I seek Your face
and You appear
to whisper sweetly
in my ear

Hold My hand child
though you strayed
I’m with you now
I am the way

In the fire
You are here
You walk so close
You draw me near

You tug my hand
say Walk on child
neither flame
nor heat is wild

You’re in control
of what it burns
eternal life is
Your concern

You are the refuge
from the heat
in this furnace
where we meet

You are the refuge
from the flame
there is no need
to search in vain

You are the one
Who’ll see me through
if I just keep
my eyes on You

I will not fail
to persevere
draw closer Lord
and I’ll not fear

You are the refuge
that I seek
Because my heart and 
flesh are weak

In these flames
I start to sweat
my story
isn’t over yet

My God, My Lord
He overcame
so build a fire
stoke the flame
fasten the chains 
of sin and shame

The Glory?
It is His, you’ll see
Because His love
has set me free

- Vera Patterson

Thursday 22 July 2021



The biggest bird I’ve ever seen
filled the sky and then my screen
formed of air and formed of mist
for but a moment to exist
suspended there with widespread wings
embracing me and everything
embracing all that it could reach
a lesson here for me to teach
for but a moment... yes that’s true
just a blink for me, for you
time is ticking soon it ends
we lose our patience, lose our friends
we lose our things we lose our light
the day gives way unto the night
we lose our joy, we lose our love
we lose our faith in God above
we lose the laughter, lose our grip
we lose our footing then we slip
we lose our childhood then our youth
we lose sight of what’s the truth
we lose time, we lose the day
we lose our chance, we lose our way
we lose the peace we fought to gain
we lose our mind we go insane
we lose our strength we lose our sight
we lose our cool and start to fight
we lose our dream, we lose our hope
lose all ability to cope
we lose our kids we lose our car
we lose all sense of who we are
we lose our parents, lose some weight
we lose our hair our eyes go faint
we lose so much it’s hard to know
how losing things can help us grow
and yet it does or so it seems
we grow some insight to our needs
we grow some balls, we grow a spine
grow out of saying “No, it’s fine”
we grow some wings, we grow some sense
we drop the need for all pretence
we grow some wisdom, grow some light
grow used to shadows in the night
we grow in touch with all we are
we grow used to battle scars
we grow weak or we grow strong
grow used to sometimes being wrong
we grow up, we grow old
we grow meek, we grow bold
we grow a voice that’s all our own
we stop expecting blood from stone
we grow patience we grow wealth
then understand that time is stealth
we grow sick we grow weary
we look around and we grow teary
we grow wistful for the time
before our age started to climb
for but a moment to exist
formed of air and formed of mist
filled the sky and then my screen
the biggest bird I’ve ever seen.
- Vera Patterson


From the sky and from the air

he watches me but I’m not scared.

My Father also watches on

as does His ever precious Son.

Eyes on me! He commands

I am the Shepherd and the Lamb

I am the way, the truth, the life

the evil one will bring you strife.

Know he’s there, be not afraid

it is for Me you have been made.

One life, one sky, One to be feared

one voice to raise, one God revered.

Your only hope, the Holy One

I’ll grant you life when life is done.

This one can only watch and tempt

In Me your soul can rest, repent

Eyes on me! He commands

I am the Shepherd and the Lamb

I will find you in the storm

from my hand you’ll not be torn.

I’ll wait for you with love and grace

resist the ways he tests your faith.

Turn to me, take my hand, 

heed my words, keep my commands.

The devil wants to steal your gaze

with eyes on Me you’ll not be fazed.

Just like these clouds that soon will pass

the life he offers will not last.

Look past my child, I wait above

to shower you with hope and love

Ignore this one who watches on

he’ll steal your soul and you’ll be gone

From the sky and from the air

he watches me but I’m prepared.

- Vera Patterson

Tuesday 20 July 2021

This is me at the beginning of each day
killing it!
Jumping high
every obstacle.

That back leg though...

Sometimes it clears
I land
sometimes it 
trips me up
knocks me out
and I feel

In this moment I remember as I approach
the hurdle -
jumping is up to
but being airborne?
That is

If I FOCUS on 
I clan clear the challenge.
That back leg right?

If I take credit for clearing the
stop to celebrate
momentum will carry me crashing
into the next

If I remember
and it will
to be Him again in
3.2 seconds
I am more likely
to jump and be jubilant
who carries me
time that 

- Vera Patterson