March 27, 2021
Let’s say there is a village on our path.
Let’s say we are asked to go ahead,
to find a colt tied by a doorway.
Let’s say this seems unlikely — and the colt
untamed and maybe not alone. Let’s say
we humor the one who sent us. And then
the colt, the knotted rope so real,
the ease of its untying.
The world is small. How many donkeys?
How many knots?
How many teachers able to see
down the road where our own
deliverances might lie?
We look for signs. Then sometimes
they look for us; sometimes, the signs
are wishing to be found.
We are given only so many reasons
to take off what has covered us, to
lay it across a donkey’s back,
to put it down on the ground and let it
be trampled there, let it
soften the way for someone else.
Let these moments have their way with us,
plant in us something light, making us
a ground for rootedness and reaching,
a reason for surrender.
Let us make ready the path that will open
into long-lost kingdoms, un-stop
the archaic lidded vessels
silted with disuse. Let us dust off
the fossilized remains of old belief.
These things can be seen.
(He looked around at everything.)
These gifts can be layered into meaning.
(They threw down cloaks and foliage
cut from fields.)
No gift is too mean.
(Give what you have, what you can.)
There is a greening time.
(It is already late.)
We will never know
what hosanna means
until we find the strength,
the will, the forgetfulness of self —
to say the word out loud and so
come to know it.
(What is the key that will open us? Where
is the voice for this day’s praise song?)
It is late, and the path
will wane if we do not
widen it by shouting the gift,
by shifting the knots,
what is in us to give.
Say it now. Hosanna. Try it on the tongue.
Hosanna. Say it in your language of choice.
Hosanna. Lend it the color
of your own cloak. Cry out from
your deep self, in your known dialect.
Then listen for the echo, what
returns. Listen for the taste
of your original voice guiding you.