Saturday, August 1, 2009

A poem for your day

We haven't had much poetry in this corner lately, so it is time to breath with words a bit. Barbara Brown Taylor, in her book An Altar in the World, begins with a poem written nearly 2,000 years ago, by Irenaeus (125-210), one of the giants of the early church. Please see my posting from yesterday about her book -- her writing is wonderful -- and here is the poem. Enjoy...

The tender flesh itself
will be found one day
-- quite surprisingly --
to be capable of receiving,
and yes, full
capable of embracing
the searing energies of God.
Go figure. Fear not.
For even at its beginning
the humble clay received
God’s art, whereby
one part became the eye,
another the ear, and yet
another this impetuous hand.
Therefore, the flesh
is not to be excluded
from the wisdom and the power
that now and ever animates
all things. His life-giving
agency is made perfect,
we are told, in weakness –
made perfect in the flesh.

St. Irenaeus
Adapted and translated by Scott Cairns

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