Burnt umber,

forest fire of feverish flames

whipped into autumn inferno –




ashes bleeding ashes,

rust begetting rust.

My soul blisters in the heat,

but  this wounded heart must be cauterised,

and only this furnace

can stanch the flow.

I cringe,

hurl myself from this altar,

scream in rage and pain –

but I know the Hands holding me here

are those of the Master Sculptor.

My material must be



welded to the frame

or subtle inclusions,

dross in the cells,

will undermine the structure.

The fire consumes,

 a rage-driven hiss –

dare I trust its heat?

Blacksmith knows

at what temperature I will be tempered,

at what point the slag will burn away.

I can’t see where I fit,

where life becomes Art,

where pain produces product;

I only see these flames.



glowing with heat,

my will is forged,

my frame is wrought,

I become


16 comments on “Iron

  1. Robert Rife says:

    Fantastic. Here is a worthy lectio divina on suffering and its eternal yield. Thank you.

  2. Peter Wiebe says:

    Wonderfully true and painful, Melody.

    • melodylowes says:

      You have been in the furnace, too – do you have any wisdom to share?

      • Peter Wiebe says:

        I feel very weak and small most of the time, Melody, just clinging to Jesus. He has allowed our sorrow for reasons I don’t understand, but by faith I trust that it is for our good. He can produce good out of suffering even though He is not the author of pain.

      • melodylowes says:

        Such a difficult lesson to learn firsthand, isn’t it? I am thinking that this being weak is playing nicely into the larger plan – although it feels VERY UNCOMFORTABLE! Comfort in the long run is not the ultimate prize, is it? *sigh*

  3. Wonderful words! I don’t enjoy the furnace… but I know it’s part of the process.

    Blessings ~ Wendy

  4. Caddo Veil says:

    It has taken a long time for me to grow sufficient faith to “know” (with great, optimal certainty)–even as I’m in the brief, temporary fire pit–that I’ll come out of it, not even smelling of smoke, and with art to show for it! Ahhh, what a wonderful GOD–how nice to be counted worthy to endure, to feel His Presence and absolute Love! God bless you big today, Melody–love, your Caddo

  5. Debbie says:

    Your words are so well chosen . make us feel the heat too. God bless you as He molds you and holds you!

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