Broken-down Poetry: The Incarnation, a poem


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Saturday, December 18, 2010

The Incarnation, a poem

The Incarnation

Let’s talk the “Incarnation”
because it is a big word
for something easy for me
to describe: God the baby.
God, who has the power
to shape-shift, turned himself from
a God into a human.

Sort of. It’s not exactly
that simple. Or…correct. I
may have tried to make this a
little sci-fi, easier
to swallow for we who don’t
like the idea that God
would turn himself into one
of us. We’re kind of screw ups.
Why would he want to be like
us anyhow? And why come
as a six pound, five ounce babe?

I find it impossible
to imagine you teething,
spitting up, dragging your full
diaper on the ground behind
you--you, a God, someone we
call Jehovah Jirah, God
the Provider, who is now
in his crib or trough crying,
wanting milk, needing his mom.

If I were honest, I would
tell you I like you like that:
small, innocent, pathetic,
unable to lift your head
even. Helpless. Like you’re like
me. Like you’re me who’s drowning
in the demands of people
who don’t realize that I
cannot even lift my head.

But I don’t imagine you
like that, not even on Christ-
mas when Nativity scenes
pop up everywhere. I
can’t stop myself from thinking
about you on that cross or
walking on water. You’re a
man with a straggly beard, not a
baby wrapped in tattered cloth.

I don’t picture you as a
babe, but maybe I need to.

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