Thursday, August 03, 2006

Engaged in the life of another, a woman without a home who lived in the backyard...

When I think back some years ago to 2000, I recall the woman who had no home and lived in the backyard of the house where I stayed. Technically, she was homeless. Yet she had a job, owned a car, and went to a university (she told me she could shower there between classes). I don't want to ruin the poem, which is spiritual in the sense that Rowan Williams writes about creation and other human beings' lives:

" opening to all a share in the fellowship of Christ's body...the human God had established, as abiding tokens of his presence, material acts and objects, bread, wine and water, and so declared all material existence to be potentially charged with the life of God." I read that recently in his book, "On Christian Theology: Challenges in contemporary theology." I make my way through this very interesting and thought provoking book on living the Christian life and living a life in communion as a member of the Episcopal Church. I do believe this so, by the way, of other communions. That is my ecumenical hope.

So you see, if you like me believe that we share others lives and have some responsibility towards them, you too may find this poem about the woman without a home both important and interesting. It is a story about love, too.

Crooning lamentations, the evicted lover
Peter Menkin
-- Sep 23, 2000

The necessities of terrible
men drove her away, to sleep
outside and travel in her car.
Part of the society homeless
who band into groups including
lovers evicted, unknown failures,

this one sleeps in the backyard
under plum trees and raccoon
rooftop trails in a tent,
in a greenhouse among redwood
trees, and showers at the university
in the city-- liking soap,

blaming blue collar up
bringingand newly rich with sexual demands
boyfriend, for injuries apparent:
jilted her to devices post modern,
love lost knows, missing what

holds but does not, she cut her
hair short, rides a bicycle
to work and eats out of doors.
She exercises friendship and
suspicion, waiting on open

life without a home, crooning
lamentation with frail bravery.
What injury to the feminine soul,
elicits a protestation of pain
among all encountered by dearness.

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