Friday, September 28, 2012

Send My Roots Rain

The title's a line from Gerard Manley Hopkins, the Jesuit Poet.

His poem Thou Art Just Indeed, Lord hit home the other day. Home being full of struggle, doubt, fatigue with Thou's unfair mystery.

It begins with these words

Thou art just indeed, Lord, if I contend with thee;

After leaving home and dropping our youngest kid off at college, doubt surfaced at a sidewalk cafe in Omaha.

Doubt about God.

And, if He is somewhere, then where?

The conversation crabbed about the Mysterious One's mysterious ways given life's unfairness's and injustices.

But, sir, so what I plead is just. Why do sinners prosper? And must disappointment all I endeavour end?

Disappointment contained mostly in the hidden-ness of it all. A never-ending journey of searching, seeking, attempting to see truth, life, the way. Yet, without confidence. Often fruitless, dry, alone.

Wert thou my enemy, O thou my friend, how would thou worse, I wonder, than thou dost defeat, thwart me?

Indeed, poet. With friends like this why fear enemies?

Might life be any more difficult and challenging with Your hidden and unknowable movements? Why so much mystery for us mystified, struggling humans?

Birds build -- but not I build; no, but strain

A patron at the Omaha cafe finished supper just then leaving an empty chair across the way as a fellow diner, mystified and struggling, on a crowded sidewalk wondered,

"Mystery, why not reveal Yourself more clearly?"

Mine, O thou lord of life, send my roots rain

Then that non-descript chair, ordinary though different from all the others, its place just over there at a different table yet on the same hustling sidewalk, as if prepared for a simple question -- a plea, really -- set alone in silence, now at the ready, beamed a helping of purpose, without doubt, stuffed with Life.

Sending my roots rain.


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