About a decade ago I crafted this poem. City Blues is an urban funk familiar to most of us; City Lights derives from many sources, but for me it especially comes from the response of one of the kids in the summer program at the church I served in Boston. When I asked, "What does it mean for us to be the Body of Christ?" surprisingly and unpredictably, one little boy answered, "That we can be City Lights!!!" As much as it sounds like my theology, this kid was not in my Bible class—really! In fact, besides being site director, I was teaching art and not Bible.CITY BLUES AND BRIGHTS – CITY LIGHTS
It's a morning glow—the kitchen at dawn.
City blues. The kitchen at dawn.
Come on, get up, wake up!
It's a brand new morning!
Look out the window, look at the sky...
Watch the stars fade
the night stars
lights of night fade
take some stars into your heart
Quick! Look up in the sky—look quickly.
quietly, softly, look
while still there's time
Circle some stars
circle some stars
to bring them into your heart
You're up, you're awake. You’re ready
You're ready, you're alive
It's a brand new morning!
It's a beautiful morning!
Hold onto the morning, day is breaking
night is over
This is the sunshine place
It's a city bright
Take that heartful of stars you've
borrowed from the sky
there's a basket over there
set some of those stars
into that basket
You'll need them in the darkness of your night.
Day's broken all over the city
City blues the city at dawn
Sit and savor the sunrise
savor the day
bask in and savor the kitchen at daybreak
Watch that basket of stars
guard that basketful of stars
Are the stars still in your heart?
Delight in them Hold them dear
And share them
City blues, urban blues that is.
There's a city out there
A big city out there
A Great City
get on out there and scratch for
hold on, hold on
Don’t let go.
Keep those stars in your heart
and give all of them away.
There’s lots more where those came from.
This city will be a sunshine place.
Day's done, it's end o'day
Watch those stars in your heart,
in that basket
Morning's over, so's afternoon
it's evening now
night's closing in...
It's sundown. Night's right at hand
Watch those stars in that basket,
on that table
Watch them closely
What promise will you offer the night?
What answer will you give to the night?
Night has dawned upon all of us
Night's here now
Now is the season of night
You made a covenant with the day
The stars you show are its sign
Will your covenant enfold the night
It's night now, darkness time
Stars in the basket on the table
Stars in your heart
In your heart
Morning's on the way