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The angry psalms are making a lot of sense right now


I don't get angry very often. I'm usually just willing to go straight to scared or sad, which are so often the source of our angry feelings. And also, I'm just wired more for water than for fire.

(If you are a friend who leans toward fiery, please know that I need this energy in my life. We need each other.)


But a couple of weeks ago, I just got pissed and wrote this in a fury. And in the days since, I've watched those in power live this out, trying, even in a communal disaster, to preserve their own wealth and might. 


Today, I'm afraid. Afraid of the news of people dying alone. Afraid of scarce resources and societal change. Afraid of the tickle at the back of my own throat.And I'm afraid that I will use my own power to hoard instead of share. If today, you're afraid or angry or both like I am, this is for us.

The angry psalms are making a lot of sense right now


And then your storehouses burned down in the night

and you didn’t die but came begging

from the ones you’d robbed to fill them

And they fed you, we fed you because

that’s. what. we. do. but you looked

when we brought out our food

from where we kept it

and in the night you came back and took it


Took the flour we meant for our children

and the oil that ran out no matter

how we prayed

and we couldn’t stop you because

you’d taken the strong ones away

to work in your fields which had been ours

until you took them too and left

the sick behind broken

with no way to walk after


You divided our land

and let your warriors separate us

and some of us didn’t notice until it was too late

but some of us have been keening all along


And I know we’re all meant to be in this together

but you chose not to be one of us

you thought your hoard could keep you safe

but we are not safe unless we are safe together

and we will not be safe together until

we are willing to be in pain together

and I want to look you in the eyes and say

Does it really feel safe to be this alone?


So now here we are

with wheat for one last loaf of bread

and no one here to multiply it for us

and you are saying, “By law that loaf is mine”

even though we all know

you are the one who made the law

that claims this provision

you with the greedy hands and empty eyes

you who gather a double portion

just to keep it away from us


And I don’t know how this story ends

It might end with your transformation

or with many needless deaths

and a cloud of grief over all we love

but the ending that scares me most

is the one where I am so afraid

I snatch the meal from you

lay it down in the soil where it grew freely

and turn our bread to bricks

for the wall of my own storehouse

~Bethany Lee ©2020

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© 2019 Bethany Lee