Where is my true love among many ex-lovers
O Lord, what hast thou called me to do
Why has everything sweet become bitter
This winter so cold I wish to visit Moscow
I long for a homeland not of this world
Russia is an icon of heaven but a reality I do not know

I am lonely but sustained by friends
I may never see in the flesh and bones
When others speak of music
They mean pop or rock-n-roll
I think of Valaam chants
Divna and Arvo

I sit in my icon corner when I should be standing
The unseen warfare leads to an afternoon nap
My hot tea is cold from neglect
Lost in the Jesus Prayer and distracted thoughts
I reheat it for a small sip
Only to forget and repeat the process

I too am guilty of only returning to God when I’m thirsty
When I should be drinking daily, hourly, unceasingly
I identify with The Way of a Pilgrim
Though I rarely leave my house
I am a monk with no rule or habit
An artist unskilled in the art of selling out

America is the land of porn and usury
The promised land for ex-Catholics and future communists
The buckle of the Bible Belt is the Eye of Providence
Guarding the beer bellies of old hippies and progressive Protestants
From a hell they no longer believe in
Where Orthodoxy is the unforgivable sin

The grass is always greener and the snow whiter
I long for what I already possess
Buddhism taught me how to be a Christian
Compassion is the first noble truth of theosis
The purpose of man’s life is deification
The mark of sainthood is not sinlessness but repentance

13 December 2019
9:00 AM