REMEMBERING JOE METZGER (8/18/1956-4/9/2019)

“I go to prepare a place for you,” Jesus said. (John 14:3)

Well, that’s what Joe said, too.
“I go to prepare a place for you.”

“Diane,” Joe said, “all those years of love and sacrifice
have earned us a nice down payment on Another Place.”

“I’m going on ahead to check on the plumbing and the electricity.
I want to add some wood paneling and fix the siding.”

“And wait till you see the Yard!
We’re getting a gazebo and a swimming pool!
What kind of perennials do you want?”



Who says you have to keep Christ in Christmas?

You have just spent an entire month
thinking of others–listing the precious few you want to gift,
sending cards and ecards to the precious many you want to remember.

You smiled sometimes as you walked brightly lit streets,
pausing to see beauty. You may even have been a little more generous to the panhandlers.

The music that met your ears was invariably cheerful,
and the words “Peace on earth” were lodged subliminally in your brain.

What more could Jesus want?


On October 26, 2018, the whole world learns your name.
The world is not pleased.

You tried to please your hero
by sending bombs to his imagined foes.
He knows they’re mot his foes.
He just likes to say that.

He says he’s a tough guy,
but he is every bit as fearful
as the rest of us.

He says he likes tough guys,
but he will disavow you.

I hope you didn’t have your heart set
on a presidential pardon.


She said
those Mennonites
who live
outside of Gomer
are uppity.

That means
she thinks
they think
they’re better than
she is.

What if they think
she thinks
she’s better than
they are?
So they have to wear
an uppity air?

Mennonites, Catholic,
Baptists–we’ve all been brought up
to believe
ours is the only way to live.
It’s hard not to be uppity
when you KNOW you’re right.