Karen L. Oberst - Poetry - Lions and Tygers and Lambs, Oh My!

Lions and Tygers and Lambs, Oh My!
by Karen L. Oberst
(inspired by I Kings 19:11-18)

Tyger! Tyger! burning bright / In the forests of the night... / Did he who made the Lamb make thee?*
[Aslan is] wild, you know. Not like a tame lion.**

Silence. Elijah heard God in the silence.

He couldn't hear God in the wind. Too loud. Too busy.
He couldn't hear God in the earthquake. Too unstable. Too unsettling.
He couldn't hear God in the fire. Too hot. Too frightening.
So God spoke to him in the silence.

My days can be too busy to hear God. Projects shout so loudly.
My days can be too unstable, too unsettling, too upsetting.
My days can bring troubles that drive me back, away from God.
So God speaks to me in the silence.

God thunders in the hurricane.
God bellows in the earthquake.
God roars in the fire.
Too loud. Too loud. Too loud for lambs.

For lambs, God whispers in the stillness,
That they may get to know the shepherd's voice.
Only then can they safely grow into tygers that can hear him
In wind, in earthquake, and in fire.

Lord, shout to me in untamed wildness
When I call to you, free and fearless.
And whisper to me in the stillness
When I am that small, frightened lamb.

Tyger, tyger, burning bright...
He who made the lamb made thee
Tyger and lamb in you and me.

* "The Tyger" Songs Of Experience by William Blake
** The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe by C. S. Lewis

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