God Shows Up

 

Reflection on Epiphany, Year A

Focus: Matthew 2:1-12
Click here for biblical texts

God shows up in a stable, then in a star in the sky
showing astrologer sages the way
to share in the celebration .
When has God shown Godself to you?
Perhaps you saw women not wearing underwear
selling lemons on the streets of Buenos Aires
and knew God in new ways.
Or you met a homeless man at a Metro stop
and now know God’s face bears deep lines
and few teeth but always a dazzling smile,
while the divine body wears rags,
sharing blessings with you and all who pass.

Soprano voices of a boy childs’ choir pierce my ears and heart—
I’m now in angelic realms of glory—
tears streaming down my cheeks and shivers cutting through my soul.
I hear a truth I thought I never knew before
that now feels like an old dear friend—
poet or preacher or sidewalk saint pierces consciousness:
I am never again the same.
A doe and her fawn run as I invade what they thought was their space
and in the grace of leaping legs I suddenly know
how the Holy Spirit moves among our souls and bodies.
A great white oak stands guard
at the entrance to my home; as it reigns
I begin to trust God’s steady strength,
knowing the One who makes the oak makes me.

Epiphany is a high class word for what happened long ago,
but it did not stop then.
Where is God showing Godself to you, to me, this very hour,
this holy day?

 
writing+poetryAbout this poem . . . .In some cultures, Epiphany, or Three Kings Day, is the highlight of the liturgical season of Christmas (the twelve days of Christmas).  However, by the time the calendar turns to January 6 in others it is no longer news because the magi have been to the manger and left their gifts already in pageants and malls. Still, this season of Epiphany is a good time to remember that God keeps appearing, and we keep being gifted, really on a daily basis—if we keep our hearts, minds, eyes, ears, and hands open. And like the manger, God often shows up in humble or unusual ways, and like the star, sometimes God arrives in glory.
©Robin Gorsline 2017 FaithfulPoetics

Something Is Up

(Epiphany, Year C; click here for the biblical texts)

When rich men pay homage
bear extravagant gifts to honor a baby
something is up
almost as if missing
the baby shower they know more
is needed by new parents funds
for diapers blankets socks
but when their limousine
pulls up in front neighbors
authorities sense more at stake
than needs of an infant and his parents.
What is going on what do they know that
we do not Who is this child Who
are his parents Is he a local boy?
Where do they come from perhaps they
are illegal should we call police
at least demand answers.
Shabby shepherds came last
week now richly dressed men
from away he they must be
something special. We have to know
the secret ask the rabbis priests imams
they have to know but will they tell
danger seems to lurk around him
even as a bright light shines over the
rude birthing bed like a spotlight
protecting the door to a laden barn
calling attention to it too.
Is this Messiah is it time?
But in a cave with cattle straw
how can that be?
Shh! Don’t tell might get them
in trouble with Homeland Security
let them leave quietly
let the baby grow up and then
we’ll know why angels sang
shepherds and rich men came.
©RobinGorsline2015 lectionarypoetics.org
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