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The Voices of Eve

Laments of a soul (LOAS) Of the soul (OTS) Comments


1.

Slip into...darkness
Fall into...darkness
Drown into...darkness
Burn into...darkness

2.

I'm lost, I'm lost, I'm lost
Torn am I, torn am I...
Small am I, Small am I...
Depraved am I..

3.

Sick...Confused...Sad...Fragmented...
All to trivial...

4.

Scared am I,
darkness I have been,
darkness I now loathe,
darkness I don't wish to see...
and darkness I have chosen forever not to be,
My world was once dark,
until a Love before time,
came to this forsaken land,
for Love cared....

5.

Upon a wooden cross,
with each stroke of nail into flesh,
broke into the dark,
and as the blood flowed,

6.

so did the light,
so did the sorrow,
so did the guilt, pain and shame
until there was no barrier

7.

Oh my Father in Heaven,
Help me
guard me from the world,
guard me from its burning eyes,
guard my heart and mind,
guard me from those who seek to destroy

8.

In You all things are possible and sacred,
In You all things are clean,
In You all have been redeemed,
In You shall I FOREVER be..
 

1.

Oh Lord
How my soul cries out to You
How long more? I ask
Must I endure this world and its wickedness?

2.

Some lives seemed so smooth-sailing
Mine is definitely not one of those
With bills to pay and family burdens back home,
I need to carry on
And yet the pain in my soul seemed so real

3.

Father, do you not hear Your daughter's cries?
And the tears i shed in my own little chamber...alone?

4.

I seemed strong in the world out there
Stating my stands, making myself heard
but truly,
I am weak inside
I need You Lord
Help me through, I pray


 

 




 

 

 


 

These two poems caught my attention because it was written by two persons, nearly at the same time. The authors are my personal friends, just as they are to one another. What interest me was the uncanny semblance of the language employed, the emotions portrayed, the patterns and even the titles used by the two authors in their poems. I am attempting here to analyze the essence of the poems by way of comparison between the two. Hopefully I will do justice to the work of these two ladies. (Girls, please correct me if I am wrong).

 

The paragraph marking is my own addition for the sake of this analysis. Each paragraph, called “verse” will be marked with the Arabic numeral 1, 2, 3… while the lines within a verse will be marked with the Roman numeral I, II, III…. E.g. The numeric quotation for the first line of the first paragraph of “Laments of a soul” (styled LOAS), “Slip into …darkness” would be 1.I.

 

I have divided the poems into four parts:

 

a) State of being

The authors voicing their current conditions in the form of issues or problems they are facing in life.

 

b) Inner feelings

The authors voicing what/how they feel in the light of those issues mentioned above.

 

c) Supplications

The authors, being Christians, now bring their afflictions before God and ask for his help.

 

d) Doxology

The authors voicing their adorations to God because of his glorious work.

 

Disclaimer:

My comments are not intended to criticize the personal lives of the two authors. I am merely criticizing their works as I understood them (the poems). The personal virtues, spiritual lives and morality of the authors are not issues in question here.




 

The Voices of Eve

1.

Slip into...darkness
Fall into...darkness
Drown into...darkness
Burn into...darkness

2.

I'm lost, I'm lost, I'm lost
Torn am I, torn am I...
Small am I, Small am I...
Depraved am I..

3.

Sick...Confused...Sad...Fragmented...
All to trivial...
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

1.

Oh Lord
How my soul cries out to You
How long more? I ask
Must I endure this world and its wickedness?

2.

Some lives seemed so smooth-sailing
Mine is definitely not one of those
With bills to pay and family burdens back home,
I need to carry on
And yet the pain in my soul seemed so real

3.

Father, do you not hear Your daughter's cries?
And the tears i shed in my own little chamber...alone?

 

 

 

 

 

a) State of being – the issues

 

LOAS

The author seemed overwhelmed by a tremendous uncertainty and though not knowing what is beyond as she was slowly attracted towards this direction, it seemed pretty clear to her that whatever it may be, it is definitely not of the good or pure. Even the experience of falling into this direction is gravely unpleasant. Yet, she could not seem to stop from being drawn thither. She was in the state of utter helplessness.

 

OTS

This is a song of sorrow. It began with a cry, not to anyone, for it seemed that no one else can be invoked for help but the Almighty God himself. Such desperation of her surrounding was spelt out in the unfairness of life and the wickedness of the world. I assume that for the former, the world seemed so mockingly wicked because the ones better off were prejudiced against those who were less fortunate. Indeed, for the victims of discriminations, this is a cruel world. And this was what the author seemed to think.

 

There was a pain, not like that of the physical pain which the body suffers, but this was a torment on the soul (2.V), that is, the inner being, which became “real” to the author. This, I presume to mean; the pain truly agonized her that it affected her life. And indeed this was the pain that shouted out to God with many tears (3).
 

4.

Scared am I,
darkness I have been,
darkness I now loathe,
darkness I don't wish to see...
and darkness I have chosen forever not to be,
My world was once dark,
until a Love before time,
came to this forsaken land,
for Love cared....
 

 































 

 

4.

I seemed strong in the world out there
Stating my stands, making myself heard
but truly,
I am weak inside
























 

 

 

 

 

 

 

b) Inner feelings

 

LOAS

“Scared am I”, the author lamented (4.I). Here again the utter helplessness of the author was displayed - the verb (“scared”) was granted more prominence than the personal pronoun (“I”). She had no control over her own state. She had no power over her own life, she was succumbing to something else, something which she knew was not right, something that she did not desire (4.IV), yet was too weak to do anything to prevail against it.

 

Here though the author was stating her own feelings.  Her voice reflected her state of being, small (2.III), insignificant (“All to trivial” - 3.II) and helpless. While she stand firm against “darkness”, i.e. an allusion to the less-than-desirable condition of life (and very probably referring to her spiritual life as well), “darkness” hovered over her sentences. She was aware that “darkness” was way more superior to herself in strength.

 

OTS

Being in a cruel world, the author inevitably had to put up a strong appearance. This was not only a defense, but also an offensive against the wicked injustice that she faced daily. It was an attempt to make them listen (4.II) to her voice. I suspect it carried the same message as her plea to God, but in a different tone. The one was an appeal for help in desperation; the other was an aggression in response to those who caused such helplessness.

 

Although she was clearly seen as firm and strong in others’ eyes, her inner voice was shouting out inaudibly; I NEED A BREAK! I CANNOT STAND IT ANYMORE! The frail person beneath that outer masquerade seemed as though falling apart from the pressure of an unsympathetic and unruly surrounding. She was after all a person, in need of care, compassion, love and mercy.
 


4.

.

.

until a Love before time,
came to this forsaken land,
for Love cared....

 

5.

Upon a wooden cross,
with each stroke of nail into flesh,
broke into the dark,
and as the blood flowed,

6.

so did the light,
so did the sorrow,
so did the guilt, pain and shame
until there was no barrier
















 

 

 

LOAS

Feeble as it was, the author was making a stance. She knew, oddly, that things were not right, that such was not the acceptable state of being. I say “oddly” because, how can one who has not known “light” despise “darkness”? (4.VII) But the author herself provided the explanation: a certain element which was opposed to everything in her bleak world broke into sight. It was not called “light” to counter the “darkness” but was called “Love” to demonstrate that the world was dark not because there was no literal brightness, but because it was desperate, forsaken and hopeless. Love came to present a wholly different set of conditions. And Love did she encountered.

 

She now paused from her lamentations and ventured into tale-telling. It was a strange story. It was supposed to be a horror story, of death and gore. There was the cross, a symbol of death, the nails, of sufferings, the blood, of mortality. Yet the combination of these seemly evil elements made up a beautiful picture of light mingling (“there was no barrier” - 6.IV) with all the ugly emotions of life – sorrow, guilt, pain, shame - symbolizing a purification of these things by, very very strangely, the macabre event of a horrifying death.

 

OTS

This poem did not contain similar section. Nonetheless, the author in verse 4 also demonstrated a move away from the preceding theme of hopelessness to that of faith and trust (see below “Supplications”).
 

7.

Oh my Father in Heaven,
Help me
guard me from the world,
guard me from its burning eyes,
guard my heart and mind,
guard me from those who seek to destroy




















































 

 

4.

.

.

I need You Lord
Help me through, I pray























































 

 


c) Supplications

 

LOAS

This verse 7 is another radical progression of the poem. The poem began with a lot of uncertainties; the use of the word “darkness” encouraged us to picture a blind man crawling his way about. She was treading in and into the unknown. But now as she arrived at this particular juncture, a sense of security dawned upon her heart and mind. In the darkness, she recognized a fatherly figure, a heavenly figure. There was something so familiar and so intimate, it was her Father. She called out to her the Person with great assurance. Just as the strong force of evil was operating to draw her to oblivion, she knew that the strong hands of her Father, not any father, but her Father in Heaven, was able to protect her. With a childlike faith, she trusted herself to her Father – Oh my Father in Heaven; With simple words, she called on her Father keep her – Help meGuard me…

 

The author here recognized there were basically two elements at work to consume her (using words like “burning eyes” and “destroy”), i.e. an external element and an internal element. The former came out of the world, it was a worldly force. The latter was within herself, something which resides in her heart and mind (that is, her inner nature) that will cooperate with the external element to bring about that dreaded calamity upon her life. Against these, she called out to her Heavenly Father for protection.

 

OTS

Here we see also one who realized the necessity of God in her life. God is not merely something which we summon whenever we feel like it, but he is that very requirement of life and of existence. The author recognized this dependence upon God and along with this she knew that only God can satisfy. This also contrasted her earlier seemly doubts about God’s concern towards her.  We read of a soul who cried out to God, “How long more?” (1.III) as if God’s timing was bad and his plan unfair. We hear a child who lamented, “do you not hear Your daughter’s cries?” as if God was deaf towards her sufferings and apathetic towards her pains. Yet we soon discovered that those were merely expression of great anguish in her heart reflecting the intensity of her sufferings. We know that she trusted God all along. For who when in want can say, “I need you” unless she trust that that person whom she addressed was able to fulfill that lack. The author trusted that God was able to deliver her. But do note that she did not pray for a lifting up of her troubles. She prayed for help to endure. She did not pray for a favourable journey, but for favour to finish the journey.
 

8.

In You all things are possible and sacred,
In You all things are clean,
In You all have been redeemed,
In You shall I FOREVER be..







































 

 

 


d) Doxology

 

LOAS

She ended the poem totally different from how she started it. All were hopeless (lost - 2.I) in the beginning, but now all were possible (8.I). All were trivial (3.II) in the beginning, but now all were significant (sacred – 8.I). All were depraved, sick, torn yet now all were whole, clean. This transformation did not happen in vacuum nonetheless. It was in God that the ugly was redeemed and made beautiful. And the author who was drowning, falling, slipping (v1) into darkness, yea, who was in a dark world (4.VI); she now, at the end of the poem is in God – who is Jesus Christ (Solus Christus)- and will always be.

 

OTS

Though there were no obvious segments of doxology, we can however trace the author’s act of worship and of giving glory to God. God is most glorified in us when we are most satisfied in him. God is most magnified when we realized our utter dependence on him and that apart from him we can do nothing. God is most exalted when we come to him again and again, unceasingly to seek his counsel and to borrow his strength to walk this life’s long road. And the author did just that;

 

Was God not glorified as a Just and Righteous God when the author went to him to complain about the horrible injustice of the world?

 

Was God not magnified as a Loving and Caring God when she ran to him like a child to a father and pour out her heart in tears, knowing that he will not only listen but also will comfort?

 

Was God not exalted as an Able and Strong God when she invoked his help to do the impossible?

 

Aye! To God be all praise and glory, the author said, between the lines.