Poetry by Tracy Marks

The Revelation
copyright 2000 by Tracy Marks
(creative writing assignment for Finding
Your Jewish Voice, Hebrew College course)

 The Revelation

Tell the story of Revelation (the giving of the Ten Commandments
on Mt. Sinai) from the point of view of a person who was there. You may
select someone mentioned in Scripture or invent a character. Also, you
tell the story before, during, or after the event of Revelation.
yourself 10 minutes.

In part two, t ell an additional story of Revelation from the point of view
an animal that was there. Again, the tale may occur before, during,
after the event. Allow yourself 10 minutes.

Finally, in part three, tell another story of Revelation from the point
of view of an
object that was there--before, during, or after the event.
Allow yourself
10 minutes.

The Revelation Part One:

copyright 2000 by Tracy Marks

From the Viewpoint of a Lizard at the Revelation:

Days of strange power. Large not-lizard shapes stomping on my hiding places. Pounding feet, flurries of sand, I dart left, dart right, seeking refuge.

Then BOOM, earth shudders. Big mountains sputters. Black cloud covers sky. I flick my tongue, taste soot in air that shimmers with power. My scales vibrate, tremble. Strange energy beats through me, pulses through sand, through rock.

Time slows, days pass. A not-lizard thunders above me, and CRASH. CRASH! My tail, crushed by tablets of stone.

I-EE! I cannot dart. I-EE! I cannot flee. My world is circumscribed. I can onlymove within a strict circle. There are limits now.

The Revelation Part Two:
The Golden Calf
copyright 2000 by Tracy Marks

Made of golden earrings, molten, created to confront the vacuum left by God, I come alive and animate the inanimate calf. In fire and smoke, Moses is lost to the mountain, and his people turn to me.

Hear me, O Israel! I am Asherah, Canaanite goddess. I am the spirit that can be seen, a tangible god for a tangible people. I am the one they worship when their trust in the intangible fades. I am the golden goddess who feeds eyes which hunger to see, the divine feminine who allows them close when their male God is distant or disappears.

Israelites, do you not know that you need me, that YHWH needs me....if only to polarize you, so that you may spring forward by pushing against me? I, the all-too-invisible visible goddess, the denied feminine counterpart of YHWH, your all-too-visible invisible God. I, whom you curse and condemn, berate and burn, so that He may prevail and you may survive.

Yes, Moses will rage, and melt me down to my core once more, force his people to drink of my remains, not knowing that I live in the ashes, that I am the ashes, that my name is my essence, I, Asherah!

The Revelation Part Three:
The Choice
copyright 2000 by Tracy Marks

The golden earrings mother gave me the day I became woman - now she tells me to hand them to Aaron so that he may forge the golden calf of Asherah.

My father turns his back as if to say, "No, I will not support your choice, but neither will I forbid it." He is not strong; he has little authority, and our people now unruly in the desert, cry for authority, for law. I have seen them grow quiet with awe when Moses first spoke the words of YHWH. I have felt the power of a God who would be Father to us all.

Vanity, they tell me, that I withhold my earrings due to vanity, not reverence for YHWH. But was it Asherah who provided the manna from heaven or the water from a rock? Was it Asherah who parted the Red Sea so that we could flee Egypt?

No, but it is Asherah who parts us now, creating rift in the desert dunes, mother against daughter, sister against sister. Never again, I fear, will we be one family.

Asherah or YHWH? Alone, I make my choice, and mourn the loss of far more than golden earrings.

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