Kilian McDonnell

Listen to me, Lord. I have a list.
You said to Abraham:
Go, leave your fathers’ graves! To me,
no word. You promised him,
toothless at ninety-nine, a son. A son
of ours? We laughed. Sixty years
you locked my womb and then
told Abraham you would unbolt it.
To me, no word. Would Abraham
grow fat, shriek, spread his legs
across the birthing stool? Is he the eagle,
I the guttersnipe, that his lordship’s
wedded spouse must overhear the news
hidden behind a tent flap?
Do I exaggerate? You turned your face
to this old woman only
to accuse me of a niggling lie. Note!
The single time you spoke to me.
Do I exaggerate? The promise,
tell me! Where’s the seal? In the snip
off Abraham’s foreskin, but no mark
upon my breasts. And who consulted me
when you bid him burn my son
on Mount Moriah? Still I exaggerate?
Why did your hand-picked Abraham
twice turn me over to the harem of kings?
Am I a cow in heat needing to be mounted?
Why did I not see light in your light?
Why did your truth not set me free?

Kilian McDonnell, O.S.B., is a theologian, ecumenist and president of the Collegeville Institute for Ecumenical and Cultural Research at Saint John’s University. Now 87, he began writing poetry on biblical personages and them

Comments

JAMES OLEARY MR | 6/26/2009 - 11:36pm

All his life, he has been one of the American Church's great, undiscovered men. He has been editor, publisher, friend, parish priest, poet, reviewer, teacher, preacher and hard worker. He is brillliant and has been behind  and hidden for much of the success of St. John's, Collegeville. His works will rise and praise him.

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