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Five Poems by Doug Tanoury

Up on Sinai

And I have answered His call
Been His prophet and been His slave
His will has been my will
And my mouth a holy tabernacle
For His words

Upon the mountain top
Beyond the thunder and lightning
Above the flames and smoke
God speaks to me in a low whisper
Carried on the slightest breeze

His voice is soft like the
Sound of waves on the Nile at night
And His words hushed like the flutter
Of dove’s wings and as quiet as raindrops
Striking the surface of the sea

And I am brought high on Sinai
Upon the mountain top
To hear the Lord speak
With the low notes of music
From a lute and lyre

Molten Calf

This is the god of lawlessness
A god of wantonness

And animal appetites
It a god of body and hunger
Of longing and wanting

That is my comfort
In these wild places and my banner
And standard in the battles
For I have grown weary and restless
In the shadow of this mountain

A god of singing and drinking
Of eating and dancing
A god of lewdness and wild gestures
Of revelry and release
In this desert place

And awaken my heart to the
Worship of the whim and
The adoration of the urge
In a wasteland so barren
In a world empty of God

The Finger of God

And the two tablets
Scribed with the law and
Written by the finger of God

His word captured in the stone
Were cast down and broken
At the mountain’s base

And I am moved
By a message from God
Shattered and in pieces at our feet
Of covenants unkept and
Testaments unmet here
In the shadow of Sinai

And I have not seen God’s face
Only his finger as he wrote
His presence fire on the mountain
A flickering and a flame
That melts an icy heart
In the company of the Lord

The Pharaoh of My Past

I was enslaved
In the Egypt of you
By one whose heart
Was hard like a brick
And whose will was my burden

And how I have come
To be free is a story of a journey
Through a desert
Across a sea
And up the tallest mountain

I was your slave
And a victim of a will so harsh
It would not bend before
The voice of God
Until He took your son

So this song celebrates
And these words now sing
To Pharos’s dead son
Who bought my freedom
And freed me from the Egypt of you

The Red Sea Between Us

And something has allowed me
To get from there to here
Some miracle of passage
Some magic that has parted the sea
Between us and carved a dry path
From among the waves and formed
A wall of water on my right
And on my left

And the power of Pharaoh behind me
Is washed away and I Am has delivered me
On this distant shore
My old life fades from memory
Like a dream that is only half-remembered
And seems unreal and somehow
Unattached from me as if I were born anew
This very moment

©2002 Doug Tanoury

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