I heard the beginning line* below at a conference, and it caught my attention – it’s from Archibald MacLeish’s modern rendition of Job called J.B. And it started this line of thought…
“Blow on the coals of my heart”*
Let not my love grow thin
when weariness wastes the withered will.
Give me the foolish courage to answer (and even ask?) the question:
“Am I still breathing?”
Fogging a mirror that reflects
Mildewed eyes. Let not ‘faith’ become a tired word
A common degradation (that offends
or obscures or absorbs).
Let me grow angrypassionatejoyfuldevastatedoverwhelmed
Hammer the fear that lulls me to sleep
Wake me with a whisper
And let me gulp the wind.
On Nov 8, Typhoon Haiyan hit the Philippines. Working where I do, we are surrounded by the news, and it’s easy to become numb to the numbers. But today, seeing pictures, reading almost-surreal first-hand accounts of a devastated place half way around the world, a couple thoughts came to me…
You know what I can’t imagine?
Waiting for that storm to hit.
Feeling like you can’t do anything else – but
perhaps, if you dare,
And just wait.
And knowing that the odds are against you.
Against your whole community.
Knowing you or your neighbor will be the one washed away.
And if it’s your neighbor,
You’ll be walking by his body in just 24 hours,
But relieved that you’re alive.
Or will you be?
And so you sit and wait and only hope.
As the winds get stronger.
As the rain falls harder.
Is there a calm that falls on you, like an eye
In the middle
or right before?
Or maybe I’d want to shout,
“Typhoon Haiyan – WE SALUTE YOU! Bring your rage on!”
But it would do no good.
Bravery and death
have no correlation.
And the only question I have left now is…
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