. Land and Lake and Sky Here standing by the margin of a lake, I look into its waters, cool and deep, Then scan its surface, glassy and opaque, Rimmed by the ancient hills, sublime and steep. They rise up nobly, shimmering gold and green, Reflecting beams which, on this summer’s day, Give all the vale a bright celestial sheen, And make all earthly shadows fade away. Except for one cast by a drifting cloud, Whose rippling shadow moves across the land, Both peak and pasture briefly to enshroud; Its stately pace is like a saraband. I raise my eyes above the heathered hills, To watch that white cloud float in azure skies. Majestic, mute, its gilded glory fills My heart with awe, as teardrops fill my eyes. It seems I hear a distant chorus sing. Could these be angel voices from on high? Or does this wondrous music rather spring, From realms below, from land and lake and sky? These three with one voice sing the awesome might, The beauty, power, and goodness of the Lord, As on His being they shed their common light, And witness to His truth with one accord. I have no need of angels coming down, To hear their choirs, or see their glowing wings, I know that God still reigns, for all around His life and glory all creation sings. . . The Old Man to His Love Come sit with me beside the fire, for I am tired and cold. The winter sun will soon retire, for life’s day waxes old. Here I would have you by my side, to warm me as this day Retreats, just like a tranquil tide at twilight ebbs away. How sweet they were, those hours we shared beneath the noonday sun When having first our love declared, the two of us would run In joyful rapture all day long through fields of wildflowers, Our love the theme of every song through time’s swift passing hours. Think back upon the day God blessed us with a little child; With joy, I made my arms her nest and cradled her, beguiled! We saw her grow, throughout the years, more lovely, till the day She spread her wings; then through our tears, we watched her fly away. Yes, even now, I still recall the springtime of our life, That blesséd hour when, filled with awe, I took you as my wife, Amazed that God in love and grace at last had answered me By sending me your cheering face, a constant light to be– A sun to keep my spirit warm when rainfall makes me dour, A lighthouse in the darkest storm that shines from hour to hour, A lantern on a darksome road, a bonfire in the wild, A cozy hearth, where dark and cold alike are both exiled. Be near me as our eyes behold the embers slowly die. Until the glowing hearth is cold, still hold me where we lie, For God has given you my sweet companion here to be, And when we part, if you should beat me home, there wait for me! . . Martin Rizley grew up in Oklahoma and in Texas, and has served in pastoral ministry both in the United States and in Europe. He is currently serving as the pastor of a small evangelical church in the city of Málaga on the southern coast of Spain, where he lives with his wife and daughter. Martin has enjoyed writing and reading poetry as a hobby since his early youth.