16 Jul

“After the uproar had ceased…”

I find I usually feel I have to dig deeper for spiritual insights and epiphanies. But this morning’s little epiphany came, borne gently on the morning breeze with the first five words (six actually) of where my reading happens to be in my annual read through the Greek New Testament. Acts 20. First verse. “And after to cease the tumult” it reads, literally. And I didn’t need to read any further.

I sat back.

I breathed.

I gave thanks.

New chapters begin in your life and mine. They do.

Our latest chapter, like Paul’s in Acts 19, may seem interminably long, dragging on and on and then reaching a pinnacle of noise and commotion – which is what “tumult” means – that leaves our senses dulled, our heart numb, our head dazed. So many voices. Faces. Feces.

But the next chapter comes. And maybe it’s just a lead in prepositional phrase. Maybe it’s just a verse before we launch into the next venture leading to the next tumultuous crossroads.

But it is enough, or at least was enough this morning, to read those six words, then pause and breathe.

“And after to cease the tumult…”



Fear and hurt are lassoes
drawing you through a door.

Lord, Lord, you say weeping.
Green herbs sprout where those tears fall.

Dawn comes; blindness drains away.

That’s enough sourness. No more vinegar.

~ Rumi


Penelope Long, “Tumult”


Posted by on July 16, 2013 in haverings, Poetry


Tags: , , ,

6 responses to “tumult

  1. randall phelps

    July 16, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    Your musings bring a whole new light to a comment Birgit’s 90 year-old Oma said once while watching a politician pontificate on television. She sat shaking her head and said “Er hat ein Tumult im Kopf,” or translated “he has a tumult in his head.” I can so relate.

  2. randall phelps

    July 16, 2013 at 3:36 pm

    What is the picture you posted at the bottom?

  3. wordhaver

    July 16, 2013 at 4:34 pm

    “Er hat ein Tumult im Kopf!” I love it! My word for the day. (practicing it now in my best German accent which is unfortunately no better than my British accent). Thank you, Randall!

  4. wordhaver

    July 16, 2013 at 4:35 pm

    Thank you for asking – I had forgotten to tag it! (Just remedied that.) I just bing imaged “tumult” and this was a few rows down. “Tumult” by Penelope Long.

  5. Kathy

    July 16, 2013 at 10:14 pm

    But the next chapter comes … a promise. Wait for it.

  6. wordhaver

    July 16, 2013 at 10:41 pm



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