Sunday, April 08, 2012

Happy Easter–The Line and the Branch



I love Easter.  We’ve had a great Easter week – hopefully more on that later.  For now, in keeping with my blogging tradition I’d like to share a poem that my mother-in-law shared with me, one I’ve been thinking a lot about lately.

This Easter I’m so much more aware of all the “pickety lines” I try to run round my days.  I’m trying to follow the Mater more, to love the branch – to be “unfettered” but also “bidden.”

The Line and the Branch
by Jana Rains

We love a line.
We love its decisiveness,
its directness.
We love its clean predictability,
  its efficiency
   its elegant simplicity.
We stack a thousand messy efforts
to find a bottom line, a plot line, a time line.
We stripe our fields and fence our ground.
We read our own brambly stories
into lines upon our palms.
Because, you see,
a line is the symbol of control.
and so
We pin our God to crossed lines
The God who was never the lover of a line.

But rather He
who instead
prefers the branch--
in river delta, in synapse, in leaf,
in artery, in lightening bolt, in crack.
All things branchy bear His Almighty thumbprint
in their tangle of thwarts and twists
and opportunistic spurts.
The branch--
the structure of agency and choice,
of generation and providence.
Energy dodging round obstacles,
sprawling through ease
and finding at last, its windy way home,
  ministering as it makes its path.

He, the lover of the branch,
Draws no pickety line round our days.
  nor does he knot them together
like a string of pearls,
  or cue them up before His grace--
but rather He casts them wide
on the vast and brutal plane
and trusts the hunger
  of the wormy root,
   the zeal of the bud.
And so we are unfettered,
yet bidden--
  "Here is sun--turn to it
  Here is water--yearn for it
  Here is manna scattered
   like seed in storm
                      find it.


  1. Oh man I love this poem even more on the third reading. So much to think about! Love those branchy ideas!

  2. i love it sis. i love that you are in england. what a gal. tell chuck i want to talk more about other fixer guy stuff.



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