Friday, April 9, 2010

Even This City Can Overcome Death

I came across this simple poem by Howard Nemerov, which provokes me again to dream. Even though he speaks a vision of Easter life to the suburbs, I imagine it speaking to the whole city, our city—the entire area of Greater Nashville. I hear in the announcement of this glorious season of our Lord’s resurrection that “even this city can overcome death…even here, death will be vanquished again…and certainly not by our own doing.” May this season be one where our God moves us outside of ourselves, so that we might be used by Him to restore life in all of its forms, right here, even here, in our city.

Enjoy the poem and Happy Easter!

Easter, by Howard Nemerov

Even this suburb has overcome death.
Overnight, by a slow explosion, or
A rapid burning, it begins again
Bravely disturbing the brown ground
With grass and even more elaborate
Unnecessaries such as daffodils
And tulips, till the whole sordid block
Of houses turned so inward on themselves,
So keeping of a winter's secret sleep,
Looks like a lady's hat, improbably
Nodding with life, with blue jays hooting
And pigeons caracoling up among
The serious chimney pots, and pairs
Of small birds speeding behind the hedges
Readying to conceal them soon. Here,
Even here, Death has been vanquished again,
What was a bramble of green barbed wire
Becomes forsythia, as the long war
Begins again, not by our doing or desiring.