Thursday Poem

Two Takes on God:

To God

God almighty, I’d be well shot of you.
I love you not, nor do I love the word,
the now made flesh, well-kneaded, tender-simmered
meatball of fair poetry. All that would claim to truth
and fain be worshipped I’ll refute

until my tongue be parched. For I’m a wordwright,
I work holes and fissures tight, hammer bulkheads
against fate’s lightning strikes, sink nails
where your thunder threatens, and curse the wiles
of the deadly serpent that you send, oh God.

I shall stand there, face to face
when your dark mirror breaks; but as David
with his slingstone. As long as I last I’ll protect
my heart, the shaky stronghold at the ravine you are
so wondrously creating – by scoops of your hand.

I mark off world, resist all higher power
and thieving urge: you filch the dear lives constantly
of all those dear to me and those with whom I like to share
the rage at leaving, the taste of which you’ve put
way back in the first kiss – your death, your ash, your soot.

by Anneke Brassinga

translation: John Irons
from: Wachtwoorden
publisher: De Bezige Bij, Amsterdam, 2005

Song of Myself –an excerpt
Walt Whitman

I have said that the soul is not more than the body,
And I have said that the body is not more than the soul,
And nothing, not God, is greater to one than one's self is,
And whoever walks a furlong without sympathy walks to his
own funeral drest in his shroud,
And I or you pocketless of a dime may purchase the pick of
the earth,
And to glance with an eye or show a bean in its pod
confounds the learning of all times,
And there is no trade or employment but the young man
following it may become a hero,
And there is no object so soft but it makes a hub for the
wheel'd universe,
And I say to any man or woman, Let your soul stand cool
and composed before a million universes.

And I say to mankind, Be not curious about God,
For I who am curious about each am not curious about God,
(No array of terms can say how much I am at peace about
God and about death.)

I hear and behold God in every object, yet understand God
not in the least,
Nor do I understand who there can be more wonderful than

Why should I wish to see God better than this day?
I see something of God each hour of the twenty-four, and
each moment then,
In the faces of men and women I see God, and in my own
face in the glass,
I find letters from God dropt in the street, and every one is
sign'd by God's name,
And I leave them where they are, for I know that
wheresoe'er I go,
Others will punctually come for ever and ever.