Song of the South: Untangled Knot

In thinking about the way in which the grace available to us in each moment helps untangle us from the many knots that keep us bound in our hearts and our relationships with others, with God, and with nature which the Lord’s Prayer points us toward, I couldn’t help thinking of a poem I wrote some years about the experience of this grace.

I hope it touches and encourages you.

Your progressive redneck preacher,



Untangled Knot

celtic knot

Arms trembling, heart racing

I fall head-long, face-down

fragile crystal plummeting

toward rocky coast

my voice a breathy whisper,

my words a tremble devoid of boast:


“I bind…”

echoes as upon me like a weight

shaking countless centuries of chains

bound on my race and I by cruel fate,

heavier than iron, harder than steel

under which we together strain

celtic path

“I bind unto myself”

like wind brushes my ear

while under the weight of a thousand worlds

I choking cry

my soul and spirit trembling

soaked by a sense, worn by the weight, of

unfulfilled promises and broken dreams

hearts shattering, minds splintering

friendships broken, hatreds borne, peoples divided



“the strong name”

I shout like a warrior clad for conflict

and as a mother laboring new ones into life

I hear a call like the crack of winter’s end

I feel my burden, like ice shattering in the morning sun, fall

about me in pieces

Suddenly from the void of night

there comes a soft embrace

as mothering arms unseen

I hear in silence

the whispers of love from strong voice

I am lifted by love-pierced hands

This icon of the Trinity draws on the feminine images used in Scripture for the Holy Spirit, as a reminder that women as well as men can bear the image of God.

“of the Trinity”

resounds about me

and I find myself rising high

as one drenched in salt-worn sea

baptized by enfolding Divinity

newly named

a child of eternity

aloft upon the winds that blow

now weightless and free

amidst the starry host aglow



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