Wednesday, October 18, 2017

God our Mother

to be a mother is to suffer
to travail in the dark, stretched and torn
exposed in half-naked humiliation
subjected to indignities
for the sake of new life

to be a mother is to say,
this is my body, broken for you
and in the next instant
in response to the created's primal hunger
"this is my body, take, and eat"

to be a mother is to self-empty
to neither slumber or sleep
so attuned you are to cries in the night
offering the comfort of yourself
and assurances of "i'm here"

to be a mother is to weep
over the fighting and exclusions
and wounds your children inflict on one another
to long for reconciliation and brotherly love
and when all is said and done
to gather all parties– the offender and offended
into the folds of your embrace
and to whisper in their ears that they are beloved

to be a mother is to be vulnerable
to be misunderstood, railed against, blamed
for the heartaches of the bewildered children
who don't know where else to cast
the angst they feel over their own existence
in this perplexing universe

to be a mother is to hoist onto your hips
those on whom your image is imprinted
bearing the burden of their weight
rejoicing in their returned affection
delighting in their wonder
bleeding in the presence of their pain

to be a mother is to be accused of sentimentality
one moment and injustice the next
to be the receiver of endless demands
absorber of perpetual complaints
reckoner of bottomless needs.

o be a mother is to to be an artist
a keeper of memories past
weaver of stories untold
visionary of lives looming ahead.

 to be a mother is to be the first voice listened to
and the first disregarded
a mender of broken creations
and comforter of the distraught children
whose hands wrought them

to be a mother is to be a touchstone and the source
bestower of names, influencer of identities
life-giver, life-shaper, empath, healer
and original love.

//  from Alison Woodward's poem read aloud on The LiturgistsOctober 17, 2017 episode "God our Mother"

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