Sparrows Painting Whales

A Reflection on Psalm 148
(with an assist from the video below)

Read Psalm 148 (or maybe 1, 8, 19, 146-150)

The poetry project is a periodic series.

In December of 2009 or thereabouts, my son, Marty Schoenleber III (aka Marty S. Dalton), put a video up on Youtube.com. It inspired me to keep working on a project I thought of a couple of years ago. The idea is to write a poem of personal reflection for each Psalm in the Psalter. Here are some of the offerings so far. Some of the poems are preceded by a brief commentary.

Disclaimer: Don’t think of any as high art. Think of these offerings as one poor man’s desire to draw nearer to Christ. 

One more thing: It is always best to read the psalm or the verses being commented on first.


Sparrows Painting Whales

The sparrows were painting whales
and dolphins.
They were singing with their wings of Your glory.
And the pianist and the cellist and oboeist were doing their best
to keep up and mirror the wonder of You, 
and what You had put into being,
and hung in the sky,
as an arrow pointing to glory
as a hint and whisper of Your wonder
as a reminder of Your faithfulness.
But I didn’t like the poem.
Not because the poem was better than mine
or more skillfully drawn than mine.
It was.
But that didn’t bother me.
I disliked it because it tried too hard to be clever.
It tried to hard to be profound. 
But it had become foolish in its beauty.
It forgot You.
It was a sign that pointed away from You,
away from glory, and majesty, and beauty, and truth.
It pointed away from love,
in a beautiful way. 
It pointed away from You.
But it is You that put the paint on the sparrows wings
And gave them memories of whales.

Go to Psalm 149


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