From Starvation to Drunken Joy

13 Nov

It’s hard to swallow sometimes
the sweet liquid that You are enough
it burns my pride as it cures it

but when I get pills stuck in my throat
(self-made medicine
from a factory in my heart
in that smoggy part that doesn’t fully believe)

I can see no other alternative
and I wouldn’t want to

truth is too delicious

because there is no cure
other than Your bread and wine

and that is my sustenance
and my drunken joy

I’ve tried  to get meat
bloody and rare
left overs from an altar somewhere

but it’s a carcass filled with maggots
I  couldn’t see that because I was
so busy counting up
what I thought I owed you

so bent on a payment plan that
I sold my last bit of grain to the poor
only for it to be lost in transport

it was only then
in my feverish aches
in my grand delusions
in my starving hallucinations
that I could somehow provide
what I needed to survive

I finally collapsed and saw
my bloated belly
and emaciated face

(and I knew I was one of them too)

I knew that the grocery stores were empty
I knew that the garden was dead
I knew that the store houses were rotting

only then was I able to be fed

carried to a feast, a banquet, a buffet
endless and guiltless and always mine

because there is no cure
other than then Your bread and wine

and that is my sustenance
and my drunken joy

“The Reformation was a time when men went blind, staggering drunk because they had discovered, in the dusty basement of late medievalism, a whole cellarful of fifteen-hundred-year-old, two-hundred-proof grace-of bottle after bottle of pure distillate of Scripture, one sip of which would convince anyone that God saves us single-handedly. The word of the gospel-after all those centuries of trying to lift yourself into heaven by worrying about the perfection your bootstraps-suddenly turned out to be a flat announcement that the saved were home before they started…Grace has to be drunk straight: no water, no ice, and certainly no ginger ale; neither goodness, nor badness, nor flowers that bloom in the spring of super spirituality could be allowed to enter into the case.”

-Robert Capon, Between Noon and Three (as quoted in Brennan Manning’s, The Ragamuffin Gospel)

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