unveiled


ever since his mother
died it always ended the
same way as the
the knife descended
the veil fell away
but he could never
identify his executioner
the moment the blade
pierced skin he would
wake up screaming
now here he sits in his
father’s field watching the sun
slowly bleed away
looking up he sees a
veiled figure standing
before him
she lifts her veil
and swaddles him
his pain now bound
up in the softness
of the spreading
night sky

(Genesis 24:62-67)


abraham’s sacrifice


some time afterward
god put abraham
to the test
take your son
the one
for whom you’ve waited
your son the blessing
your son the promise
your son the future
and offer him up
tear him down
just as you shattered your
own father’s idols.

when abraham awoke he
looked down at his son
still sleeping
looking up he saw a
ram caught in the thicket
he walked out into the night
took out his knife
(here i am my son)
and cut the beast
loose.

(Genesis 22:1-13)


voices at sunset

as the sun was about to set god said
fear not abram i will protect
you and your reward shall be very
great i will return you to your
fathers in peace and you shall be
buried by your sons at
a ripe old age
the sun sank still lower and
abram heard a low voice whispering
know that your children will be
strangers in a strange land
enslaved and oppressed but when
their pain pierces the heavens
i will execute harsh judgement
upon the ones they serve
i will bring them to this land
and dislodge its inhabitants
to make way for you
when the sun disappeared a great
black dread descended
upon on him like birds of
prey alighting upon a
freshly slaughtered
sacrifice

(Genesis 15:1, 11-20)


creation undone

and god saw every color
of the spectrum splaying
out through the shattered
firmament shining like jewels
scattered across the
jagged shards of creation
undone
god said now i know
the desire to destroy hovers
just behind the desire
to create
as these wounded heavens
are my witness i will never
again annihilate everything
i cannot shape and
mold and bend to my will
still i wonder
will humanity make
this covenant once the
waters recede
from the
earth?

(Genesis 9:12-17)


the second day of creation

then dark waters gushed forth
across the face of the deep god
drove back their raging and
destroyed the great sea monsters
leaving their remains to feed
the creatures that
scavenge the bottoms of
of the deep the tempest now
exploding god wrestled
the waters of chaos behind
the floodgates of the
heavens saying you may come
this far and no farther
here your surging
waves will
stop

god looked at the expanse
that separated the waters
below from the waters above
and called the expanse
sky
and there was evening
and there was morning
a second day

(Genesis 1:6-8, Psalm 74:13-14, Job 38:8-11)


the death of moses

the night before he died he
dreamed he was floating in the
water like a freshly fallen
leaf whirling further and
further downstream just
before he went under
the daughter of his executioner
drew him out of the water
and cradled him in
her arms
turning to his savior he
wondered could this
be the face
of god?

the next day as he gazed into
the eyes of his beloved
his soul was reclaimed
with a kiss and
the one whose
name means taken
from the water
flowed
effortlessly
back
to
the
sea

(Deuteronomy 34)


face to face

“Death of Moses” by Alexandre Cabanel

on that day the lord said to
moses take your final
journey ascend to the top
of mt nebo and i will show you
the land from above
do you see how it
fulfills my promise do you
see how its light flows
and dances like
milk and honey do not
grieve moses do not be
frightened for now you will
finally greet me face to face
the moment for which you’ve
yearned now turn and gaze
into the eyes of
your beloved

(Deuteronomy 32:48-52)