If you have experienced suffering in the context of instituional religion perhaps you will relate to my poem. I offer it as a catharsis to create an opening to healing.
I Venomous Voices
Specks of stray spittle launched on spurious words
in hallowed halls of religion
fifty, thirty, sixteen years past:
“I’m the one asking the questions here. You just answer them.”
(Yes, Daddy…or was that Father?)
“How long has she been chasing you?”
“I won’t hire her. She’s angry.”
“She discusses WITCHES with her students.”
(One of THOSE feminists)
II Healing Voices
Hope is an April shower pinging
off tender green shoots
“…I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction….Now choose life.”
“Rather than focus on what’s threatening to strangle you, why not focus on what’s struggling to be born?”
“Trust your intuition.”
(Be the Spirit Whisperer)
Passing showers lift
this withering flower
by the bootstraps of her integrity
and stand her up straight and strong.
The landscape has changed.
Fissures of venom have burned
new pathways in my heart.
No longer Bride of Christ
No longer Battered Wife
I am a seasoned colleague
In the business of Gospel Living.
© rita h kowats 2014
Photo Credits: My dear friend ministers as a psychiatrist to veterans. I took the original picture of this sunflower in the community garden which her team and the vets established as a sanctuary of peace and sustenance.