Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Lent 7 (A Poem)

"Gethsemane"
After Matthew 26:30ff

Stay with me, stay awake with me,
Stay by me, I am cold, and long the night
Across the sea, this brittle boat, taking on water.
Stay with me, bombs bursting in air,
Shrapnel where schools and markets once
Protected the dreams of Mosul's children. 

Keep watch where I grieve, where my soul splits,
My own Gethsemane at the crossroads
Of Wall Street and Madison Avenue,
Where this battered tin collects pennies
As a dapper banker hails a cab,
Or an Uber, or anything else he can pay for. 

I throw my life, my soul, this blood my inheritance,
I throw myself upon the ground, upon all ground,
Upon the unforgiving sidewalk of the city,
And the Aegean beaches that wait in the dark.
I throw my heart, my hands, my knees upon the streets
Of Mosul and the hills of your safer lands, Germany, America,
The godly fields that do not belong to the dapper banker.

Let my scraped palms mark the land, it is mine.
Let my blood run to the streams, through holy forests.
Am I not one of you?  Is my name not known in heaven? 
God, forgive, for they know not what they do to me.

So will you watch with me, in the sad, dark night,
You who name yourselves after Love's Son?
Will you protect me from the security forces, zealots of faith
Who do not recognize my humanity, my story, my face?
Will you stand, alert, at the edge of Gethsemane
As I pray for wisdom and strength and 
Wipe the dust from my eyes, hoping?
Amira’s family fled their village in Mosul in June 2014. Today they live in Baharka camp near Erbil. UNHCR/I.Prickett