Poem on the incarnation

/ 3 March 2007

One of the best parts of working with the Lexington Seminar for me has been learning from gifted colleagues. Here’s a particular gift from one, who has given me permission to share it. It’s a poem written by Vic Klimoski:

Discourse On Incarnation

As long as God can be kept
a mathematical computation
where equations lead to daunting sums,
we need only fear miscounting
when our mastery of addition
fails an accountant's careful eye.

For when we stray from concept to pulse,
to the nearly ungraspable assertion
that in some omniscient lapse of judgment
God took on flesh and breathed in
the very ethers of creation,
we cross our hands in self-protection
as though our modesty's been breached.

Blood and breath mean body,
mean muscle and sweat, teeth and spit.
If body then touch, flesh to flesh,
the feel of bone beneath the skin,
the sensation of being recognized.

With a body, notions of divine encounter shift
from assent to fleshly embrace,
where belief becomes overwhelmingly familiar.