Saturday, February 21, 2009

watching Aslan

it was a long and dark winter,
the wind was knifen bitter,
from the platform i remember
there was snow...down below

and i walked the zoo, nearly alone,
but haunted and hunted by something,
a presence, descending...never ending,
mingled with my shadow,
it leaned into me, through the cutting rain,
and i was awakened,
perception re-emerged,
though veiled thoughts,
construed,
at the zoo.

where the lost roomates of Eden,
trapped and transported,
grieving,
in cages of wire, glass, steel and concrete,
look at us with forlorn eyes...weeping.

and there was a lion

and he stared at me a long, long time,
eye to eye for long-longing minutes,
as if his DNA was awakening to an instinctual dream,
dormant and dead,
but suddenly whispering.

and through his eyes he asked me
"son of adam,
are you here to set me free?
and if so we can run together,
and wrestle,
and laugh as we used to,
as we are supposed to,
before the apple fell,
from those crimson lips."

and he just stared at me, through me

so i answered out loud

"no...i have not come to set you free,
oh son of Aslan, i wish i could,
but i don't know how."

so he looked away, and never met my eyes again,
and the memory faded from his mind.

and creation seemed to groan,
the aches of her ancient heart,
and her lost glory.

and i walked away.

back into the zoo,
I live in,

full of steel, concrete, glass, and string,
back to pacing my own cages,
wondering when i'll be set free,
of the traps around me,
and handicaps inside me,
we are brothers...lost to one another in this time and place.

not just the animals,
but we ourselves.

I walked by the university of bearcats,
and we all passed each other in the streets, doorways.

I wondered for a second if i asked a stranger if i could...
groom them, like the monkeys do...
or run with them, like the wolves...
or play with them and wrestle...like the polar bear cubs...
or wipe away the tear i saw in that one lost little college girl with the yellow hat and brown gloves,
or bring sanity back to the shouting man outside the gyro shop,
or hope to the single mom screaming at her child,
or strength to the old man who asked for a quarter...and the dignity which long ago left his eyes.

but no

we keep ourselves behind our cages,
lest we be devoured,
lest we come to life...and live different.

and i drove back to the convent,
back where,
sacred time and sacred space converge,
where angels drip with water and icicles from the bell towers of saint elizabeth,
where i am no longer caged...at least for a spell of days

and i long for heaven,
as aslan's son yearns for the plains of Africa,

longing,
displaced time,
what a strange way to evolve?
it's as if,
we were instead,
trapped and caged,
by our own folly.

oh God
set us free!

1 comments:

Sarah said...

I love this image "where angels drip with water and icicles from the bell towers of saint elizabeth,"

It has nice music to it too.

This is a great piece. I wouldn't mind running with lions sometime. Ah, what we have to look forward to ;)

 

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