Weather or Hot


In our moderate to the extreme climate

a day such as today

with its temp. in the mid-70s

causes us to plumb wilt away.

Those experiencing degrees such as 117

would stand aghast and wonder how this could be.

82? Oh, the horror! How do you carry on?

But we’ll just start up a new chain gang song

about humidity

and weep like Job on a not so merry day.

“Honey! Come look!!”

“What is it? Are you alright?”

“My forehead is wet! Should I take something for it?”

“Here, have a seat and a glass of iced tea. I think it

may be sweat, but to be safe I’ll Google it.

Better yet, I’ll check Web MD.”

Persistence, Realization, and Horse Sense




to the realization

through hard work

and persistence

that there is nothing

altogether common

about what is generally known

as horse sense.

Whether the topic

is children

or far east policy

or angels

or indeed, horses

nothing short of enthusiastic

application of curiosity and desire

will spell the difference

in success or failure

of the courses.


Garden Gnome

We recently installed several bird feeders in the dogwood tree in our front yard.
They’ve proven pretty popular with the local finches, sparrows, blackbirds, doves, etc.
I decided there were so many birds taking advantage of our largess that they needed a guardian.
I’ve every confidence in the little guy. He even sings while watching over
the birds, although I must say his song selection tends toward the melodramatic.
The first one went something like this: “Gnomebody knows the trouble I’ve seen…”

Follow your heart?

panzies 002You have heard,

“Just be happy and follow your heart.”

and it was doubtless

said with good intention.

A thousand self-help books

more or less

make that mention.

But our hearts must be surrendered daily

if we hope to be happy

and free,

and the choice

to follow Jesus

is the wisest of


And without faith it is impossible to please him, for whoever would draw near to God must believe that he exists and that he rewards those who seek him.  Hebrews 11:6

that grain of sand


beginning as a mountain
big as half the world
broken down by lightning
while peals of thunder unfurled

fell into the sea
to stand in the way of ships
the north sea threw itself at me
till I went to smaller bits

the world heaved back
then it shuddered forth
I rolled into a river
felt the rage from its source

with my back to that river
and my face to the sea
here I am that grain of sand
as small as can be

from the good Lord’s earth beginning
until the scroll is read
I’m seen it all behind me
and I see it all ahead

© Joel Clayton Tipple

“Peace I leave with you…”


“Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you;
not as the world gives do I give to you. Do not
let your heart be troubled, nor let it be fearful.”
John 14:27

Not as the world gives,
Not as the world gives,
Not as the world gives,
fleeting & unsure.
A vision floating on the desert horizon,
cruel and deadly.

Instead Lord, your peace is the gift you left with us
and that which we share.
It’s a cup that cannot be emptied,
but instead grows if we give it away.
Peace everlasting,
our inheritance by virtue of adoption.

Spider, Please Step Forward

You put your right foot in, and the other one, and the other one, and the other one,
and the other one, and the other one, and the other one, and the other one.
You put your right foot out, and the other one, and the other one, and the other one,
and the other one, and the other one, and the other one, and the other one.
You do the hokey pokey and you weave another web,
that’s what it’s all about.

Will the following spider please step forward.

You weave your webs
to little fanfare
blinged out with dew
in the chill morning air
but they’re the ones I see,
for invisible in space,
are the ones I walk smack into
strung all across my face.

The Refrigerator


I’m uncertain whether the rest of the world
shows such an affinity for display
of so many wide ranging items as we Americans
on our refrigerators today.
I’m sure there are many
which are so organized that they
surely represent a family
with all its ducks in a row
at work
and even at play.

Then there are cold boxes such as ours
with a mish-mash of photos and art
that depict both young children
and adults that merely seem young
though not physically,
maybe at heart.
There’s odes to procrastination
like a gift certificate half used
with paper
now yellowed
and just a little abused.
There are photos of children in school
and with their families at Christmas.
There are x-rays of bones broken
several presidential administrations
past. There are coupons put up
with good intentions and recipes for food
I’ve a mind to clean it all,
to make the fridg. look right.
I just hope I don’t lose something
important like an Eisenhower
presidential election ball invite.

debacle loan hypocrisy

stuff13 027

When he said
I just want to be a loan,
They mistakenly thought
he intended
but really
he wanted to share
anything within
him worthy

She felt so defeated
by her inability to finish school
she referred to the whole episode
as her debacle-laureate.

The two “hippos” stood in line
hoping their vet had taken a “hippo-cratic
was up on his shots himself
so as not to be filled
with hypocrisy.