Ravings of a Lesser God

“Rebellious, sinful man no longer bows his knees to God, he has set himself up as a god. And each one becomes a god, and so there is discord and disunity, rivalry and strife.” (D. M. Lloyd Jones, Christian Unity, p. 129)

How is it with me?

I am a world in the world;
I am the center of my cosmos.
Do not mistake this for the ravings of a madman.
It is not madness you hear,
But the selfishness of a heart
Drowning in a sea of desires.

But that is perfectly legitimate –
Is it not?
To love one’s self above all else,
To be sovereign and lord
In a world of my own making,
To be god in my own mind.

But why be god in my own mind merely?
Why not be god in the real world too?
Simply because the real world
Is a stubborn place filled with stubborn people:

Everyone else wants to be god!

How stupid can they be!
Can’t they see there can be room only for one god?

I should be loved!
I should be worshipped!
I should be cared for
And magnificently pampered!
But no; I have been unjustly deprived
Of all that should be mine!

Well then, the real world
Is a hard place to live in.
But no matter:
I could always live in the recesses of my own mind.

Call it insanity if you wish.
I would rather be insane and divine,
I would rather be happy in fantasy,
Than bewildered and perplexed
In the real world.

Copyright 2020. Dennis M. Cortes

(Photo by Armin Lotfi on Unsplash)

Not Enough Time

Time is finite like the sand
imprisoned in an hour glass.
I cannot do all I would like;
a few more grains and all is past.

Too many books, so little read;
too many dreams, so few fulfilled;
too many melodies still unheard;
too many choices – which to make?

The act of choosing pierces me,
like an arrow through a sparrow
swiftly falling from the sky,
born to soar and then to die.

If only I was single-eyed,
focused on essentials!
But if I choose the true and tried,
where is life’s adventure?

(Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash)

Copyright Dennis M. Cortes 2020


His sorrows spread like wildfire
Through land that’s lush with trees;
An angry conflagration
Consumes the boundaries.

Whereas before the music flowed
Through vibrant life of green,
Now scorchéd earth is what remains
Of dreams that might have been.

Oh, guard your heart and let not grief
Destroy the future too!
The present flames that purge the soul
Are not the end of you.

Copyright 2020. Dennis M. Cortes

(Photo by Joanne Francis on Unsplash)


“How great a forest is set ablaze by such a small fire! And the tongue is a fire, a world of unrighteousness . . . set on fire by hell.” (James 3:5-6)

The wicked tongue of a stranger
pierces my unprotected heart.
His senseless vain remarks
are set aflame by hell.

Today the world can see and hear
what used to be so private.
Bold and brash they are because
they are anonymous.

They’re like the arsonist who sets
the sleepy town ablaze.
The fire is there for all to see,
but not the enemy.

And that’s the state our world is in;
the very air’s unsafe.
The fires are burning all around
while demons run amok.

Copyright 2020 | Dennis M. Cortes | All rights reserved.

Photo by Dawn Armfield on Unsplash


“For they loved the praise of men more than the praise of God.” (John 12:43)

Estranged from happy thoughts
the sensitive are,
because engrossed with Facebook
they are.
Delete your social media!
Gouge your eyes out!
I told you reading is
a better thing
than liking your friend’s post.

Copyright 2020. Dennis M. Cortes

Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash


I force myself to write a song;
I find it hard to write.
What will it take to make it strong?
I strive with all my might.

And even if there’s no one else
To listen to my song,
I’d never give up on my gift.
To do so would be wrong.

Success is not the only goal
That one can have in life.
At least, I’ve made the effort;
At least, at least, I’ve tried.

And when my days have quickly passed,
And I have no more voice,
I’ll still feel gladness at the last,
Although my eyes are moist.

Copyright 2020 Dennis Cortes

Photo by Jefferson Santos on Unsplash


Believe the raindrops from above;
There is a Providence that cares.
Lovingkindness watches o’er us,
Watering plants and trees and grass.

The earth drinks in the pouring rain;
The skies are happy to oblige.
The gifts of heaven, daily given,
Are free. Receive – and more besides!

2020 Copyright Dennis Cortes

Photo by Geetanjal Khanna on Unsplash


I totter on the steep cliff’s edge.
The roaring waves like music
Beckon to me: “Hurl thyself
Onto the waiting rocks!”

Ne’er have Jaws been so alluring;
Flames leap up the watery pit.
Devils’ heartbeats are expecting:
”Come on down! Come, lift thy feet!”

(I think it’s a good idea to write a poem every time I write a devotional. That way I get to hit two birds with one stone. I also think it would be a good idea to sometimes explain what I’ve written. For example, the poem above is not an encouragement to end one’s life. It’s a picture of temptation. I wanted to capture horrific aspects of temptation: seduction, destruction, enticement, hellishness, etc. It’s serious and demonic and not something to treat lightly. And yes, giving in to temptation is akin to suicide.)

Photo by Lane Smith on Unsplash

Copyright Dennis Cortes 2020

Something in my hand

I carry something in my hand
as heavy as this big round world:
A book so full of heavenly wisdom,
more precious than perishable gold.

An explanation is in order: I’m now applying Atomic Habits to my blogging. Since it’s so difficult for me to get started writing a poem nowadays, I decided to write just one stanza a week. At least I get to write something. Better than nothing.

Copyright Dennis Cortes 2020

Choosing My Life’s Passion

Choosing my life’s passion
is a top priority:
Shall I climb a mountain?
Shall I climb a tree?

Shall I write a poem?
Shall I write a song?
Practice my profession
or play piano all day long?

Shall I preach the gospel
and lead people to the Lord?
or become a judge
and hear cases till I’m bored!

This is paralyzing,
having to decide.
Why not just surrender
to the current or the tide?

Copyright 2020 Dennis M. Cortes

Photo by Joshua Earle on Unsplash