Friday, February 10, 2012

luci shaw | three wedding poems

for Greg and Andrea

As God, creating, lifted from Adam
the archetypal rib, now, Greg, because you were alone,
he gives to you Andrea, telling you,
“Here. This is your woman, bone of your bone.”

And Andrea, longing for your loving to come true,
remember how the Lord God spoke,
so that a curving, warm bone woke
into a woman--vital, beautiful, and you !

Lord, let now your word leap down again, restore
Eden, and innocence, and say once more
Good! Will you, who made one like yourself,
and from that one made two,
join them in one again?



How like an arch your marriage!
Framed in living stone,
its gothic arrow aimed at heaven,
with Christ (its Capstone and
its Arrowhead) locking
your coupled weakness into one,
the leaning
of two lives into a strength.
So he defines your joining’s length
and width, its archetypal shape. Its meaning
multiplies: the letting in of light,
the opening of your vision to the sight
of new and varied landscapes, planned
but yet to be explored.
A paradox, for you, who stand
today before us--
you who doubly frame this arch--
may now step through
its entrance into the promised land.


Amazed by love

The kinship of woman with man, of water
with stone, is a mystery—the biting of rocks
into the river’s body—the lotion of water like silk
on rough granite—a touch tender and feral,
like the wind combing a green field of oats.

A storm—all the earth trembles, and then is still.
This astonishment, with its sudden thunder,
will shake the breath in your body the way oil
and water shiver together, and when they settle—
a strange new thing, with its pearly light.

To enter the breadth in the joining of two
is to be dazzled—there is so much space in it—
such endless possibility makes you feel smaller than
the ants on a petal, and as wide and rich
as heaven at noon. And the ocean wrapping the world

in its sapphire scarf—at water’s edge, right
at your feet, you will see stones you have
never seen and never will again.
To be amazed by love is not to be blinded but
to let the flare of wonder fill you

like air filling a sail. Isn’t this
the voice of God at work? Even his silence
breathes life into you, a golden sigh as fresh
as Eden. To love someone is not to lose anything,
but to gain it in giving it all away.

illustration by Anton Koberger,
German Bible, 1493