PSALM OF THE NAIL
- The nailmaker’s craft still flourishes – manufacturing:
we always need nails for building, or sold by the ounce;
- though it can be dangerous to use if the hammer misses:
or it may cause serious accident, with its sharpened point.
- So Jael killed her enemy with a pin from her tent:
the leader routed in battle but felled by a woman;
- and Israel sang a victory psalm praising the women:
may all God’s enemies perish bringing peace to the land.
- A reminder of brutal facts, the nail of reality:
even in my pocket it’s sharp, prodding awareness.
- Jesus was hung on a cross, the criminal’s death:
the three traditional nails are not in the story,
- but whatever stands against us, he’s set aside:
nailing it to his cross, Saint Paul declared.
- Pain and grief is for all, the nail of suffering:
without it we cannot know God, who suffers with us.
- The faithful servant of God, Isaiah proclaimed:
is firmly fixed in place, unmoved, secure,
- the sayings of the wise are sharp, nails driven home:
guide me, carpenter builder, marked with nails.
- The satisfying thud of the nail, fixed and firm:
the peg in the Temple wall, a holy place.
- So help me stand faithful and true, the nail of trust:
unmoved and ever in place where you are close.