United Church of Christ

Living Psalm for Pentecost 5 A - Song of Solomon


Living Psalms Book

Psalms in the form of words and art, reborn in the specific contexts of our world, privileging the voices of historically marginalized communities and those acting in solidarity with them. 

One of the options for a responsive prayer for Pentecost 5 is a poem from
the Song of Solomon

Song of Solomon 2:8-13
Pentecost 5: July 5, 2020

We hold these truths to be self-evident,
that independence is not Creator’s purpose—
that bodies are made to love bodies:
the body earth! the body human!

Listen! The voice of my beloved!
They sing freedom songs for their body, and I love them—
their inalienable right to leap on mountains and march in the street;
caress and stroke and gaze with the light of starshine in their gazelle-soft eyes.
Arise, my love!

We hold these truths to be self-evident,
that the fig tree puts forth figs, vines blossom with fragrance,
our bodies embrace for the love of God—
dependent on dirt, dependent on rain, dependent on one another.

Perhaps you will say these verses do not belong
in our holy text. Perhaps you will cringe
to juxtapose carnal and sacred,
country and body. Perhaps you will shy and shame,

but we hold these truths—they are evident!—
we are holy. Arise, my love. Come.
Leap and love and be in body! We are to be free
for the touch and taste and scent of one another—

me in you and you in me and
we in All. Beloved.
Listen!

Living Psalm  for the 5th Sunday after Pentecost: Song of Solomon 2 was written by the Rev. Sharon A. Benton
Lead Pastor at First Congregational UCC, Bellingham, WA

Living Psalms Book is created by UCC Witness & Worship Artists’ Group, a Network of UCC connected artists, activists and ministers bridging the worship and liturgy of the local church with witness and action in the community.  Maren Tirabassi, editor

Logo is detail from Living Psalm 80 by Sophia Beardemphl, Redwoods, CA. Recovering from significant bullying, Sophia, age nine, read Psalm 80 and thought of brokenness that needs mending. She drew this broken and mended bowl.

© Copyright 2020  Sharon A. Benton. Permission granted to reproduce or adapt this material for use in services of worship or church education.  All publishing rights reserved. 

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