Moshe squints as the feet
of the swirling mob raise ghosts of dust
in the desert heat.
He draws his kaffiyeh across his face.
The sheep continue to bleat,
and in the midst of their badinage
the horizon is shifting shape –
a shimmering blue mirage.
Moshe’s shaded eyes see the paradox.
The inside of everything is moving
in the dead still of the outside paddocks.
In the shifting shapes of ghosts, a bush burning:
its thermal motion outside, but within no turning –
just the Steady State. His Presence proving.
Sandals gone, veil on, Moshe hails the Shekinah:
for in the image of the shape-shifting Presence,
He is capable, even gifted, as you are,
of looking inward and outward. So Moshe assents
to being what he will be:
swirling ghost yet made of star.
Published in indigo:journal of west australian writing Spring 2009
3 thoughts on “Moshe at the Bush”
What a powerful, beautiful, mysterious poem. Good work!
Ethel and I looked up Shekinah after coming back here this morning. The place where you can explore the feminine aspect of God. That puts yet another dimension to the poem. This is as powerful as some of Gerald Manley Hopkins’ or Thomas Merton’s work as religious poetry. It drew me in the first time I read it, but this second time it is more powerful yet, a sign of a great poem.
Thomas, Your comments are very kind. I am glad that the poem has moved you.