On Mondays I’ve taken to writing psalms. This week, I’ve been thinking a great deal about the language we use to describe god-likeness. (Yes, the lower case “g” was intentional.) I’ve been considering how all people have some metric, some quantifiable measure of holiness, and how sometimes (perhaps often times) those Metrics become a convenient substitute for God. (Yes, the upper case “M” and “G” were intentional.) In thinking on these things, this piece spilled out.
Psalm #8 (We are Babel)
We built altars;
we built altars
first to prohibition, then to liberty,
next to the mystery of sex, then to sex itself,
to salvation, to sovereignty, to the individual,
the assembly, Jesus, Mary, Allah.
We piled dogmas up, one upon the next,
the merciless tower reaching nearer heaven–
the heaven of our imaginations–
and in the shadow of these many ideas
we gathered, flailing limbs
as in celebration of our god-likeness.
In this way we still find ourselves,
strangers in spirit speaking competing
but common languages.
Another scattering, Lord.
When flailing false finds the god-fruit
in stones, or ideas,
in circles, or in the thighs
of various celebrants,
bring us to another scattering.
fling us far and wide
to four corners,
teach us again Eden’s dialect,
the first speech that happened
not from mouth to ear,
but from Spirit to spirit.
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