About the Collection:
This Collection is a group of narrative poems where the speaker asks characters in the Bible hard questions not fit for Sunday school. It is meant for the reader to take a deeper look at the text of familiar Bible stories that perhaps they grew up on, or maybe they are engaging with for the first time through the eyes of these poems. It is meant to challenge the reader to ask themselves what is it that they really believe and why? Is it because that was how they were raised, or because it gives them a vague sense of peace, or is there a much deeper spiritual connection involved? Come with the speaker on their journey as they grapple with their own relationship with God, and their place in existence on the vast universe we call home. As you read through these poems, I encourage you to find your own answers to these questions.
Adam and Eve
Adam, what was it like to dust off God’s creation, and breathe out God’s spent magic? Eve, what was it like to be weaved from Adam’s rib? For the Creator to say the universe is not complete until you exist? To know that you were such a masterpiece that God had to rest on the seventh day? And God wasn’t the only one, Adam was well pleased too. I sit here in awe trying to picture Eden. I admit my imagination as wild as it is cannot begin to comprehend the mysticism of your home. I wonder how long you got to live there? How long you go to live in the perfect oasis? How long you lived in harmony with God and man and nature and beast? The animals you saw the plants that you were surrounded with. You wanted for nothing. Your life was simple and easy. I wake up every morning envious knowing what it feels like to struggle. I struggle to provide for myself. I struggle to take care of my family. I struggle to be happy. The only thing that drives me is the hope of heaven. That one day I could get back to what you lost in Eden, but you did not know what hope was. There was no word for hope. Every need every desire was satiated. You were only asked one task, one simple task. Why would you give that up? Tell me what was it about the serpent that was so convincing? Eve, you plucked the fruit; you gave it to Adam. Adam, you knew God’s command. You could have stopped this whole act. You both defied God. You cursed Man and Woman and separated them from God. You caused tremendous undo suffering for generations to come, and I do not blame you. For what it’s worth, I forgive you. If the roles were reversed, I would eat the fruit too. Sometimes, my greed, my selfishness, my darkness bubbles to the surface, and I think we were given a choice to follow the desires of our heart it is the nature of man, and it makes me incredibly angry at God to give mankind such power… such responsibility! We are naive children in the garden, and He knew the consequences of sin. He knew the consequences of biting that pomegranate. We didn’t. We were easily fooled. We let ourselves be easily fooled. Well, did you know? Please, tell me you were fooled?! Please, tell me you did not know the consequences of your actions. That you did not consciously decide to thrust this cursed knowledge on us. Adam, when God found you in the garden and you hid, did you not think God could find you? What was the feeling of shame like for the first time? You went from being this carefree exhibitionist to being the most uncomfortable person in their own skin. I was born into a world that is quick to shame others to deflect from the inner shame they feel. A wound I feel that you are familiar with. I would love to know what it’s like to be free from the undo bondage of being ashamed of the very creation of who you are. Adam, when God clothed you and cast you out of Eden, were you grateful or bitter? Did you feel it was justified? Did you feel God bestowed kindness on you or was too harsh? God didn’t leave you in your shame, and he could have. He could have destroyed you and the universe that He created, but he didn’t. He allowed for redemption. Who knew it would take so long? Eve, you still had the task of birthing humanity, and it was going to be bloody and painful, and these two beautiful boys came out. You loved them. You nurtured them. You tried to raise them right. You tried to warn them to not make the mistakes you made. Did you weep bitterly when you heard the news about Cane and Abel? Did you blame yourself? Did you think it was the curse you brought on them? What was it like to watch the sin you started perpetuating in your children? Did you believe they could be saved? Did you have hope? Is that what you worked so hard in the fields for Adam? Would you have raised them differently if you could? Adam, Eve, Why do you think God allowed us to live in a fallen world? To till the earth, to populate it, to take care of the animals, to build, civilizations, and empires, to create, and innovate, and then recreate? There are wars and famines, mass extinction, and diseases that destroy humanity and the earth at large, and what mankind does to our fellow man is the worst atrocity murder, rape, incest, genocide just to name a few. Your children were proof you had hope. You carried on. You continued to worship God faithfully even after punishment. Why? Was Eden really that glorious? Is it worth fighting for? Is God worth fighting to have a relationship with? You knew Him best! You knew Him from the beginning. Adam, He spoke you into being. Eve, He twisted your body out of bone that used to be dust that used to be words. Adam your words still exhale God’s residue. Eve, your bones were touched by God’s Hand’s. You knew the Creator intimately, and when He cast you out of the garden, the relationship changed as all relationships do after betrayal, so I am hesitant. I am unworthy; I am a sinner. I follow in your footsteps and your ways of destruction. All I know is just as you have been created so have I. I caused my mother a great deal of blood and pain and tears; and when God breathed life into my lungs, I cried. I struggle to find my place in this world. So many of your feelings: shame, bitterness, sadness, undeserved love. I feel them too. Brother, Sister, we are kindred. You are me and I am you. *1 Inspired by Genesis Chapter 1-4 in the New International Version of the Bible
hanged, and showed mercy. Rainbows bring happiness to me their color spectrum peering through the clouds showing hope, promise, like warm colorful beams of better days, but do rainbows make you feel uneasy? A double-edged sword gleaming of peace and destruction? When a storm came in, did you still pray for God not to destroy the world? A trauma response of what you went through. When do the trauma responses stop? When does peace come in? Is that why the sky is riddled with rainbows? One promise is not enough, one rainbow is not enough, we as humans, need constant reassurance of God’s promise? I know I do. You saved the world, you preserved humanity, conserved nature, watched the world drown, and dead bodies float, the rain came, the boat rocked, and your body shivered and shook, you didn’t do it alone, you had your family perhaps your saving grace, perhaps your backbone to keep you standing, looking upward at the heavens waiting for the rain to come, waiting for God to fulfill His promises in your life, to use you to do impossible tasks, to use you to save us from our wicked desires, one righteous man stood and obeyed to save humanity from the tip of a mountain. By Hyacinth Hale *1 Poem Inspired by Genesis Chapters 6-10 of the NIV Bible