Distant Thunder

“The LORD! His adversaries shall be shattered; the Most High will thunder in heaven.” – 1 Samuel 2:10a

Ah, Hannah, generous of you, to spread your thanks
as broadly as a many-bristled brush, and not
to concentrate upon the detail of
your own distinctive celebration.

How dare we be so proud? We know
that God has lifted up, and God has tumbled down
the weary and the prosperous not once,
but time and time again across the span of time?

Indeed, these days have found us humbled once
again, at least we should be humbled now,
discard vainglory’s claim to safety through
the wonders of technology,

For all the care we take to trace disease,
and all success to find the means
to vaccinate the people, still
the folly of humanity prevails.

Ah, Hannah! Pray for us, that this reversal might
not bring us down to grovel in our pride,
to weep at further graves, lament our lost
communities and loved ones gone.

Yes, Hannah, pray for us, that this reversal might
lay down our pride, so we can stand
and raise each other up, to weep in joy
that we discarded folly’s ways in time.

O help us hear, upon the flowing wind,
the distant rumbles of salvation’s thunder, hope
that peoples near and far may know God’s grace,
and with their voices echo Hannah’s song.

A poem/prayer based on 1 Samuel 2:1-10, the Revised Common Lectionary Psalter Reading for Year B, Proper 28 (33).

The image is Anne, femme d’Elqana et mère de Samuel, priant (Hannah, Wife of Elkanah and Mother of Samuel, Praying) by Unknown author (10th century), found in the Psalter of Paris – Bibliothèque nationale de France (BNF). Cote : Grec 139, Folio 428v., Public Domain, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=14041273.

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