Mark 1:23

Now there was in their synagogue at the time a man under the power of a foul spirit, who called out,

everywhere a scream erupts
we are thrown into original chaos
what’s happening to whom and why

the what of life brings no surprise
of course a scream     who wouldn’t
evil schmevil is immaterial

we have done to ourself
what others desired to do
we scream differently they scream

I have done to others the harm
I never would want for my own
their scream echoes my scream

even a road less traveled
carries a distant dirge
of what might have been

here in paradise we seek comfort
unavailable in any search for joy
though startled we still listen

whys and wherefores come ’round silent
in the presence of an authoritative scream
caught between creations

Into the middle of a debate about the limits of the law there is an urgent cry. To hear one cry is to begin hearing multiple cries.

What unclean, evil, spirit is behind a whimper of hunger, a wail of rape, a groan of murder, a sob of theft by fountain pen?

Churches have turned themselves into places of petty politeness by keeping all cries in the third-person. It is most surprising when an authentic cry appears in the midst of a time of formal instruction. Suddenly there is a rush of fear. Disorder is bad enough everywhere else we turn and now it is right here inside our place of holiness.

With temptations supposedly relegated to the physical wilderness outside, we are uncertain as to how to deal with a choice having been pressed upon us to heed a cry and engage it at the healing level or repress it and return to our routine. This very choice reveals how wild we have become.

As long as this seems to be a choice for us we know that our infighting when left alone and our inability to deal with being occupied are but two sides of the same coin—possession. We are now able to see how we have self-censored our freedom by not even hearing a cry in our midst, much less responding to it.

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