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Unfolding-- to Dust This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

I

One morning when I unfolded
This was what I heard
In the fabric of a prayer shawl
From the hymnal of a bird

From the wolves was lamentation
From the serpent—a weeping sound
From the butterfly—a battle cry!
And the howling of a hound
In the silence I heard the answer
To God’s questions unto Job
In my breath I heard the broken sigh
When Joseph quit his robe
I heard the madmen settling down
I heard the scholars rail
Said the beggar “I am able”
Said the giant “I am frail”
I heard the rustling olive branch
Amid the whistle of the dove
Said the monarch “Here—your freedom”
Said the cynic “I’m in love”

II

One morning when I unfolded
This is what I beheld
In the streaming of the sunbeams
And the oceans as they swelled

I saw the canyons perish
I watched the rivers dry
The LORD re-writing history
In the corner of his eye
I glimpsed the Resurrection
I saw the kingdom come
I envisioned a modern exodus
And living martyrdom
The clouds performed a cosmic dance
The waters, in tune, did part
Through the ribcage of a ghost
I read a transparent heart
I saw the sages sorrowful
And the poets overjoyed
The stars with solemn voices
Stumbling into the void

III

One morning when I unfolded
This is what I felt
As the angels beckoned “come to us”
And the Summer whispered “melt”

I felt a certain sadness
But could not trace the source
Was it the grievance of the righteous man?
Or the wicked man’s remorse?
Then I felt a certain happiness
And knew from whence it came
The smile on my lover’s face
The healing of the lame
Laughter rippled through the air
Oh the ash of sacred fire
To heaven—dying men return
To life—we all retire
A caress, a kiss, a warm embrace
And I was swept away
By the fluidity of time and space
And the nakedness of day

IV

In honor of what came to pass
And all that is untold
I pray that we may sit quite still
To watch the world unfold



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This article has 21 comments. Post your own!

SaphiraBrightscales said...
Feb. 23, 2013 at 8:06 am:
Maybe you captured much more than just the vapor...This is so deep and thought-provoking and the title is perfect! I am amazed by how you capture a reader's interest from the very first line.... This was amazing.. And I was happy to read it because I was glad that someone else thinks about these things too,... Everything is so perfectly put and it seems as if you never really make an effort to create a rhyme (WHich I love by the way) , it's as if it just comes and keeps coming....LOved i... (more »)
 
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KylieKThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Aug. 19, 2012 at 6:22 pm:
Gorgeous!   Thank God someone reads the Bible these days. Or, are these dreams?
 
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An-eloquent-leafThis teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
May 13, 2012 at 1:31 pm:
Aye...wow. I must say, I think this is one of my favorite poems of yours I've read yet. The clouds performed a cosmic dance and The stars with solemn voices/Stumbling into the void – simply delicious, the imagery is amazing (not that I should expect any less from you ;) )

I can't remember if I have told you this yet or not, but whenever I am craving some wonderful poetry, I always click onto you profile to quench my thirst, since I know your pieces will never let me d... (more »)
 
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RedFeather said...
Dec. 9, 2011 at 3:15 pm:
Yet another editor's choice award. Have any of your poems not gotten that check mark? Still, it's easy to see why, though I think that a lot of these should be published in the magazine too. Great poem - again. I'm running out of things to say to each of them.
 
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Duckie430This teenager is a 'regular' and has contributed a lot of work, comments and/or forum posts, and has received many votes and high ratings over a long period of time. This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Sept. 25, 2011 at 7:15 pm:
wow, amazing work here. i really like this poem
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 26, 2011 at 7:43 pm :
I thank you dearly, dear duckie.
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 26, 2011 at 7:43 pm :
A question, why is your work published anonymously?
 
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IamtheshyStargirl said...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 6:02 pm:

When I found this in my email yesterday, I gave a little squeal of delight, but I only read the first line last night. I wanted to read it when I had time to ponder, and truly write out a comment on the computer, my first impression fresh and fragrant on my mind. That, to me, is really the only way to read your work, however impatient I may be. 

I wanted to tell you, I really the see a raven the other day, on the way out to our car. It wheeled softly in the sky overhead, but disap... (more »)

 
IamtheshyStargirl replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 6:04 pm :
Oh, and I noticed it got editor's choice, congrats, Raven, you have my heartfelt congratulations, I believe that is an award well-merited, and full of meaning. 
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 8:06 pm :

That anyone would read my work in such a way gives me a little shiver of happiness that crawls up my back, and perches on my shoulder, and hops into my heart to end up as, ha ha, a 'little squeal of delight!'

The raven you saw must have been an omen, Stargirl; I've been reading about them in The Alchemist. Have you read that wonderful, wonderful book? Anyway, did the raven make any noise, or was it a silent raven?

I must read this waterless mountain, and see if my heart i... (more »)

 
Aderes47 replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 8:19 pm :
That's what that red check next to the title means...
 
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Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 2:03 pm:

As for the kindred spirit,

When I wander in the desert

It seems to disappear

For want of my precious guide

I collapse in fateful fear.

But today I found that my spirit

Went in me, not away

To help me deal with the desert

And the nakedness of day.

 
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Aderes47 said...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 1:27 pm:
This poem is exquisite, yet another product of your genius. :) I love how the second stanza everything is the opposite of what it's supposed to be. The third stanza captured my mood yesterday perfectly. The fourth stanza captured something of great importance. It's such a great ending. You should publish a book of your poetry with Penguin group. Get together some of your best poetry and send it to them! See their requirements and just do it! :) And if they reject you, try another time! I... (more »)
 
Aderes47 replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 1:29 pm :
Boos-flash is back! :)
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 2:00 pm :

Aderes, your comments are always bundles of joy and of sincerity, and I open the bundles, always, with delight.

By the chance that I ever get a book of poetry published, I will make sure to include you in the dedication for your encouragement. ;)

And we celebrate his/her return!

 
Aderes47 replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 2:02 pm :
Your bundles are also bundles of joy! :) Dedicate it to Aicha, because that's my real name! :)
 
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savetheplanet said...
Sept. 23, 2011 at 9:47 pm:
This is beautiful!  This also really helped me because I've been struggling with some faith issues lately.
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 1:17 pm :

How wonderful to hear that?

What faith issues have you struggled with (of course, you don't have to answer if you don't desire to)?

 
savetheplanet replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 1:35 pm :
I guess I'm just tired of people telling me to believe something just because they tell me to.
 
Thesilentraven This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. replied...
Sept. 24, 2011 at 1:58 pm :

Here's the way I look at it, Liz.

God was always here, and God will always be here. He was there way before us, way before Christians, way before the church, way before humans, way before the earth. Perhaps you have trouble believing in God (if I understand correctly) because the God that people are convincing you to believe in isn't the God in which your heart yearns to believe.

 
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