Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Poetry Threads.

[Edited to remove very long link. It was shutting down the blog.]

This very long link leads to a google image of a braid.
I picked this particular image due to the colors of the individual strands or threads.

One problem with the way modern, western civilization read the Bible is that they look upon it as an owner's manual or instruction manual. You can see this in their application of Ephesians 5 toward marriage and you can see it in Driscoll's application of the Song of Solomon.

I've got news for people. Poetry is so far removed from instruction manual material it is laughable. When the Bible was written, no one ever heard of an owner's or instruction manual. They didn't think in those terms. We think in those terms because we live in an age of technology and having to know how things work in order to get by.

But even in our modern age, do we feel the need to look at modern poetry as instructions for life? Why this compulsion to make Biblical poetry into such a thing.

What is poetry? It is many things, some of which are hard to pin down. One reason for this is that poetry can have many threads making up the whole. And the threads are woven together. Modern writers do this in both fiction and poetry. Why is it so difficult for some blockheads to see this?

WTH: "I have been convinced for years that Driscoll has the world's biggest tin ear for poetry. He doesn't think in poetic terms but in terms of propositional statements and formal arguments. This isn't just manifest in his approach to Song of Songs, it's also revealed perhaps even more tellingly in the fact that in fifteen years he's never done any substantial preaching from the Psalms. He did some okay work in the 2004 Advent series going through the songs in Luke but that was obviously more than half a decade ago." From a comment under his part 4b post.

I've complained in the past that the Songs have been mishandled by perverted men. I appreciate further understanding that another mishandling is by men who have no grasp or understanding where poetry is concerned. Men who try to shove poetry into an instruction manual mode have no business handling the poetry at all. They destroy and crush rather than teach and open understanding.

Song of Solomon is not a single thread of erotic and explicit, sexual instruction. Making it into it does violence to the text.
Rather it is a many layered poem with many threads, probably more than three, woven through out.
One of those threads is sexual.
Another of those threads is allegorical or typological.
Another thread is on healing.
Another thread is raising up of the downtrodden
Another thread is empowering the feminine against the anger of misogyny among men (supposed brothers).

There is much woven into this poem. It can be many things to many people. It can meet a point of need within a person's life. It can help with marriage. It can help with our relationship with the Almighty.

Smacking it down into one-size-fits-all is thievery and a great injustice. Glimpses of eternity can be found in it. Forcing it into a finite box is done by fools who rush in where angels fear to tread.


Kristen said...

Well said!

Mara Reid said...

Thanks, Kristen.
I'm surprised you could make sense out of it with all the mistakes it had in it. Yesterday was a frustrating day. Blogger was freaking out on me and freezing up my computer at work and at home and making it difficult to do anything.

Thanks again.