Night Psalm

I have tested my thoughts
And examined my heart in the night.
I have scrutinized myself
And found bounteous wrong.

I cannot believe what I am about to say.

I have followed your commands
Instead of cruel and evil men—
I need your help to stay on the path
As I waver from following you now.

I am praying to you, Lord,
Because I know that I will hear you answer.
Bend down and listen as I speak—
By your mighty power grant safe harbor.

I have drawn nets from many waters—
Yes, in many seas have I weighed anchor.
I have seen the reflection of Tabor
In the blue of Gennesaret at dawn;
I have seen the crimson moon rise
Over the prow on Hula at dusk;
I have tasted alkali and dust
From the great Salt Sea on broken lips,
Even felt the burst of the Cretan breeze
Force its way through my robes off Joppa.

The storms have not cowed me—
The gales have never kept me from port;
Neither rain nor sleet has chilled
And the waves have not dashed my spirit.
I have even stood by your side
At the most miraculous of calming seas.

But today we set forth
On a voyage I dast not make.
Guard me as you would guard your own
And hide me in the shadow of your wings.

Protect me from the spirits
In the waters off Gadara, Lord—
They would drag me down
And surround me in the deep.
They are like lions of the sea
Waiting to devour my flesh—
I can hear my bones crack
As their fangs rend sinew and hide.

You are their undoing, Lord, and mine:
Stand against them, for they are legion.

Because I am chosen I will be at peace:
When I awake, I will see you face to face.

About Greg Wright

I have worn many hats as a writer and editor over the years. Unlike my scholarly and journalistic work from the "old days" at Hollywood Jesus, Past the Popcorn, or SeaTac Blog, the writing here is of a more overtly personal and spiritual nature. I hope it provokes you as much as it provokes me.
This entry was posted in Poetry, The Gospel According to Peter. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Night Psalm

  1. Greg Wright says:

    Having just survived a near sinking of his vessel on the Sea of Galilee, Peter contemplates setting sail once more on those same waters… with the added bonus of knowing that 2000 demon possessed pigs now lie beneath those same ways. Most sailors are superstitious, and Peter is no exception. He has nightmares about the prospect.

    See Mark 5… and also Psalm 17, which inspired this piece.

    I wonder: Did the demons throw the swine into the sea? If so, why didn’t they throw the men into the sea? Or did the swine just go mad from the presence of the demons? If so, why didn’t the men likewise throw themselves into the sea? Or did Jesus cast the swine into the sea to dispose of the demons? If so, why? Perhaps to test the resolve of his disciples, who had a hard time dealing with a little bad weather on the outbound voyage?

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