They probably sat around tables, in a room lit only by olive oil lamps, a few small flames, sometimes steady, sometimes weaving in an unseen movement of air like a passing zephyr disturbed its burn and the ducking, flickering flame cast moving shadows across the eyes of the students of the prophet,
their noses casting dark inverted funnels of shadow
on creased and bearded faces as they remembered their mentor,
Isaiah, long gone in body, but more than a zephyr in spirit his voice echoing even as they reflected –
“Forget the former things! Do not dwell on the past! See, I am doing a new thing! Do you not perceive it?”
And they shift nervously on creaking benches. One clears his throat. Another lifts an earthen challis of wine to his cracked lips.
“Do we dare write this down,” asks the youngest one, leaning forward, finger bent to the parchment of the scroll, his head scarf unravelling. “Right when our people are at their lowest? Does this not simply tease them?”
And the oldest of them, crows feet splaying from a twinkling eye, smiles at the youngest. “Yes! Write it down! Let them know that all oaks begin covered in dirt. Do you not perceive it?”
And the stylus scratches, and the words form letter by letter. Forget the old way, so you might perceive the new, already growing, under the dirt.
And outside the room the passersby hear a burst of laughter.
Among the guardians of tradition and those who cling to old forms like an old woman her purse, the prophet’s students sing:
“Forget the former things and do not dwell on the past. I’m doing a new thing. Can’t you see it?”
This is absolutely beautiful!
I agree, very beautiful. I just started reading your blog recently and noticed you have not been posting. I hope all is well and I see your beautiful work again.
What’s happening with you? Life has been very hectic since last summer.
This is awesome. Just saw your sermon from Richmond Baptist back in January. LOVE IT!
Are you okay?????
Thanks, Lynn! I’m doing quite well. I haven’t blogged in about seven months because of a huge transition in my life to Birmingham, Alabama where I work now. Not to mention the break-up of my marriage. I’ve been wondering if I should pick up the blog again and have just about decided to start posting again. Thank you very much for your good words.
Please, do start posting again. I just finished SPECIES OF THE CALL. It is one of the best books I have EVER read, and goes right along with what I’ve been learning, especially in the last 5 years. So glad you’re on board with UAB! If you’d care to share, my email address is firstname.lastname@example.org. To your sermon (and the date it was ‘published’ was on my 59th b’day) I say, surely this must change the insecurities of so many when they learn that they’re “…..on the list.”
Lynn, thanks again for the good words and I’m very glad you found the book to be meaningful. Please pass it along to others! Again, thanks for the encouragement, too, to start the posts again. They’ll be coming soon.
I have ideas…going to our fabulous book store, Square Books, to pump your book to Richard Howorth, the owner and a friend of the family. Also going to blab about it to FPC book club, of which I’m a member. It won’t take long for SPECIES OF THE CALL to catch on. And Oxford’s a mecca for the old and the new of the literary greats; this book is one.
It hit home with me (I’m deep into journalizing).
I might add, the break-up of a marriage is the biggest life-changing event that I, so far, have lived through, and my life has become new and better. You have a precious daughter, and I have no children, so maybe it’s much more difficult for you, but my closest friend made it through with hers. Your song, “Warmth of Living Light” doesn’t hurt. LGT
Again, Lynn, thank you so much.
Try reading “Invitation to Love” by Thomas Keating. It’s excellent on what he calls “evacuating our childhood programs for happiness.” If I understand correctly what you mean by “soul pollution.” And sorry it took so long for me to figure out that I hadn’t responded to your question!
what do I read for the “soul-pollution” problem?