Riches and Rhymes

The Poetry and Writing of Janis Gaines

Month: June, 2012

Always Reaching High

Always reaching high
My spirit longs to fly
Above the clouds full of rain
Above this life so full of pain
And soaring brings me to a place
Of unearthly beauty where I can face
This world of woe with eyes of grace
And embrace the souls still on the ground
I once was lost, but now I’m found
And you have played a part
In this journey of the heart
Lifting up my broken wing
Giving me a song to sing
Believing I could be my best
When life has put me to the test
And when this flight comes to an end
When the breeze has died and stilled the wind
I will own my treasured view
For I have seen beyond the blue
And all of life that will remain
Is the rainbow from the rain
Beauty draped across the sky
Hope eternal, spirits fly
Always reaching high
Always reaching high

© October 3, 1999
Nashville, TN


Don’t Be Afraid of the Dark

Don’t be afraid of the dark
For even the dark is a light for me.

Don’t be afraid of the dark
For even the dark is a light for me.

I’ll be the light in your heart
Showing you the way
Any time of day you get lost

I’ll be the light in your heart
Always knowing what to do
I’ll be there for you
In the dark.

***Samantha’s lullaby
Happy 19th bday, baby girl…

© 1993-94
Nashville, TN

Sing, Dance, Shout

For the Lord is our God
And lift up a voice of thanksgiving
For the Lord is our God
And lift up a voice of praise

For the Lord is our God
He has conquered all of our enemies
For the Lord is our God
He has triumphed over the grave
He is mighty and able to save

For the Lord is our God
Our victory He has won
For the Lord is our God
And great things He has done
Through the precious blood of the Son

Come now and see
What the Lord is bringing to the earth
Come now and see
The precious fruit of our new birth

Come now and hear
The Lord of Hosts is drawing near
Come now and hear
His holy name will soon appear

Come now and know
The Lord has loved you from the start
Come now and know
The Lord has given you his heart

Come now and say
I’m with you Lord all the way
Come now and say
I will sing on that great day
I will stand with you today

Call forth the songbirds
That sing in the night
Preparing the way for morning to come

Sing, dance, shout
Prophesy and declare
In the face of darkness and death
That hope springs eternal
From the well of Yeshua,
Jesus our Lord,
That love is alive and waiting
To be drawn upon
And surely the dawn will come
But you must sing
Of your love for the Righteous One
Sing of your love for Jesus
God’s dear son

© April 3, 1999
Nashville, TN

Strong of Heart

Strong of heart
Strong of might
Righting wrongs
And doing right
Faithful one
Be made whole
Allowing peace
To fill your soul
Love before you
Love beside
Love be near you
Love inside
And, Love, be wise
Until we meet
And join our hearts
In union sweet
Ever graceful
Be our love
Reflection of
Our home above

© April 1, 1999
Nashville, TN

A Mother’s Prayer

As in heaven, so on earth
Abba, Father, bring forth the birth
Of life, and love, and unity
Perfect picture of the Trinity
Reveal within this heart of mine
Show forth Thyself to be divine
And bless this child to know the worth
Of as in heaven, so on earth

© June 1993
Indianapolis, IN

A Quiet Shine

The world needs some big stars
Some brilliance up in the sky
Fireworks and rockets
Blazing in fire
A magical spectacle
Of lights on display
This name or that name
Vying for fame

But all I need is a cabin
With some low lights around
In a corner with a small table
Is where I’ll be found
Give me the light of a single candle flame
And a dusty book of wisdom
And a glass of fine wine
No loud glaring distractions
Just a soft, quiet shine

***written in response to song “Shine Away”

© September 11, 2009
Flowery Branch, GA

You Have This Way

You have this way about you
When I hear your voice or touch your hand
Even from a distance
Like the Pied Piper that raises his flute
You lead me to a beautiful place
And you keep me there
Like a dancer able to hold her pose
Or a mighty rushing waterfall that never ends
Or a singer able to hold a note
Without giving in to the need to breathe otherwise
For there is no other breath
There is no other pose
Only the endless river flow of your love

© January 30, 2002
Atlanta, GA


It was one of those mornings
Like any other day
With a distinct chill in the air
And who knows what really caused it
Could have been the traffic
Or the weather or the lights,
Speeding here, going there
Heading anywhere but home

I remember the sounds around me
A whizz and a honk and a false start
Vaguely, like waking up from a dream
You know it for a moment
And then it’s gone

They tell me there was a crash
And that everything’s okay
But when I returned to the scene of the accident
I couldn’t find myself in the wreckage

© February 14, 2007
Flowery Branch, GA


Every word
Formed with care in the fibers of your heart
And sent forth as breath from your lips
Carried through time and space
Searching for its rightful place
Hitchhiking on all the Earth’s vibrations
Circling the Sun and spinning in orbit
Reaches its destiny
The intended ears meant to hear
The intended heart
And there it bursts
In brightly colored flames and sparks
Like fireworks and shooting stars
And all the heavenly colors of your intonations
All the shades and variance that was within you
Descends in all its radiance and glory and meaning
Into me
A shower
A spectacle of grace
And your words do their work
One color heals
One color shares
One color laughs
One color gives
Touching me with life and love
In the secret shadows of my soul
Beyond the barriers of my mortal skin
And together they end in peace
These soft words spoken
As they find their new place in me
And I rejoice in my good fortune and fullness
And I keep them for a while and smile
Happier for their presence
Til I offer them back to you
The same
This little game of speech we play

© March 15, 2003
Atlanta, GA

This Song

I heard this song playing on the radio tonight
Curse the machine
But it took me there again
Made me think and remember you so well
Made me want you still
Shameless songs they sing
Through my blood it rings
“No, I can’t stop loving you.”

© March 31, 2003
Atlanta, GA