To sleep and dream essentially

Beneath the heartbreak canopy

Oh, mother Moon, dare come to me

Break me in your glow

I know the things I need to know

I left the Sun and strung the bow

Shoot the sky and hang below

Flutter on the gleam

So awfulness departs from me

Reclaim my shattered ministry

Of mocking moth and laughing breeze

Guide me to the nameless road

Perfectly Terrible Shielded Days

Thank you for trying to protect me, but I’m ok right now.

The glacier wall is not my foe
She guards the garden of my heart
Pushes back the world in flame
Holding life and death apart
She arose as roses rise
Responding to the awful rain
But lately I with frozen eyes
Wear a grief I can’t explain
I wondered why I was not Real
I thought my garden poison fruit
Then I remember snot and tears
And sliding down the side of you
So there you stayed and so did I
Wall of ice and crystal shield
But now its time to drop the guard
For there’s a whole life left to feel

Blue Georgia

A blue Georgia,
like a great mother ocean
Containing possibilities
that the sun-baked stone
could scarcely imagine.
The southern seas are shifting,
Rifts open up to wild flowers.
Black women claim their power
and while it might not be our finest hour
It might be.

Blue Georgia on my mind,
like honey sticks in the summertime,
I know water doesn’t often flow up north
but listen, your hat is on fire,
Tennessee like the titanic
lodged in blood red ice,
Wouldn’t it be nice
If the sycophants enshrined
wrote their names
at the unemployment office,
Good for them to experience something new,
Good perhaps for me, for you

Blue Georgia in the sun
What a ways you’ve come
Laid to sleep last night and I believed
My feet would still be red,
Behold the shifting hue of the morning
so thank the God’s for you
and all your transforming.

My name is Juniper.

I’ve been using this as a poetry blog mostly. I’d like it to hold more of me. A space where vulnerability is allowed to exist.

I am a 32 year old trans woman. I’m also a minister. Well, mostly. I’m still in seminary, but I have been a ministerial intern for over a year. I’ve done weddings. I’ve held the hands of the dying. I’ve heard the people curse a God I didn’t believe in either. God is not the engineer of our pain. Neither are we. Nor is the devil or some primal evil.

It’s just this. It just is. I’m sorry it hurts so much.

I came out when I was 22ish. Maybe 23. Late 2011 into 2012 is a fog for me. The only community of trans people were older than me, from a different time. I wish I’d gotten to know them. I hated myself though. I was afraid of what I was allowing myself to become.

Sometimes saying yes means being ok with being scared. I was afraid for years. Fear was all I knew. It still haunts me.

Mostly I was afraid of the shame other people would feel, and did they ever feel it. Or perhaps I felt like they felt it. An imagining. I was in a shame loop. I still am some days.

That’s what dysphoria feels like for me mostly. It’s distinct from, but deeply related to shame. I’ve been very fortunate to have access to hormones and some surgery and this has overall helped tremendously, but somethings can’t be so easily changed.

Not easily, but if I’ve learned anything it’s this. Everything changes.

My question for myself (and for you, if you’re still reading) is, “How are you steering the wave of change that is your birthright?” You. Me. We, and all things, are the children of this cosmos, trapped in the womb of a teenage mother who can’t kick smoking. It’s not that she doesn’t love her baby. Addiction is a disease.

The fetus makes a tiny fist, and through the goo, shakes it at a God they cannot see.


Rich kids in their mausoleum

from every self-inflicted ill imaginable

While my boys dangle wires on the street

Fire and needles in their arm

No harm done til the last note strum

Cop out. Bull shit.

Past the pillars impassable

Skip past, laughing

Between a soft place and a hard thing

Syringes in and crooked sting

a hole and a venom and a dream

Eats you from the inside out

Like a spider with no web

No web but the connections bled over

All of your friends rotting inside because a life is over

Knock your ashes over in the clover field and weeping

Sleeping will only be easy for you

We all Grow Crooked

What haunts you may yet haunt forever,
Linger crooked in the hall.
In between the bad and better
In between the rise and fall.
Shadow tall, you know it’s name
Rings a bell and Tip of tongue.
We left it in the weeping wires
We burnt it out inside our lungs,
Yet there it lay beside us sleeping,
and in the tasteless food we ate,
We rose up broken from the table
in arms of Love we can’t repay.
Behind you thought the briar planted,
yet tracks of roots one can’t mistake.
Smells of sweat and tears and ashes
It looks a path we must retrace.
So staring down a phantom splitting,
This after-birth of emptiness,
We pull a feather from our heart
and bless the darkness with a kiss.

My fear of dentists is the fear of death

White coats and cold gardens

Steel blade and bones hardened

In the hollow eyes of an all blonde nursing staff

Laughing as she says Joy

Means Jesus, Others, Yourself

There is no comfort

Only the slide

And the pull

And the nothing

Musings on Masks and the Life of Jesus

When it comes to whether or not to wear a mask, I see many folks taking them up and I see some spurning them, citing that they are totally useless and/or a mechanism of state control. I won’t say masks are fully preventative, they aren’t, but even a 30% rate of mitigation (or 10% or 5%) is better than no mitigation. They are part of a broader response we can all take, a response that we’ve all had beat into us so much this year that it feels like old hat, but the thing I see a lot of folks missing out on is the bigger “why?”. While a mask will not fully protect you, it is rather more effective at limiting your ability to communicate the virus to others. It follows then that, if we are seeking an act of service to not only demonstrate our care for others but actively practice it, we have an option right over (not under, dear God…) our noses.

So what does Jesus have to do with this?

To me, this is a What Would Jesus Do moment if there ever was one. Would Jesus shake his fist at the sky and say “I’ll never wear a mask! I won’t live in fear!”? Or would he say “Love has no greater sign than this, that a person lay down their life for others.” and pass out masks to his disciples? The man healed the sick. The least we can do is mitigate our likelihood of becoming a vector.

By all means, don’t violate your own conscience and do something you find reprehensible, but I hope you’ll at least consider what I’m saying. Love means nothing unless it’s made actual. The Love Beyond Understanding makes itself known in the bounty and beauty of the world, and in times of crisis it is made known through the hands (please wash your hands too!) of people just like you and me.

Be good to one another⚘
Love your neighbor 💜
Wear a mask 😷