Prayer for Paris, for all of us after the attack on Charlie Hebdo

Prayer for Paris

Bon Dieu, you sketch
the cartoon of us
before we are born,
send the satires of prophets
to make us angry
strip our pretenses with parables.

We mourn each who died at
Charlie Hebdo
and pick up
the pencil of the spirit
that we may never stop
drawing the truth.

Bon Dieu , you need no defense,
ask for no revenge,
shrug your great gallic shrug
at all mockers.

We mourn those who died
protecting others,
Frank and Ahmed and Clarissa,
and pledge to protect
wise and foolish,
gentle and abrasive,
people of faith and people of laïcité.

Bon Dieu, you are so often
hostage
to our angers, intolerances,
our fears and religions.

Restez avec l’otage d’aujourd’hui
et de donner la paix. Amen

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4 Responses to Prayer for Paris, for all of us after the attack on Charlie Hebdo

  1. rezrevres says:

    Effacer de tous ces fanatiques égarés la vision déformée qu’ils détiennent de vous, que tout le monde peut avoir la paix. Amen

  2. Maren says:

    Thank you Matthew …
    trans. Clear all these misguided fanatics distorted vision they hold you, that everyone can have peace. amen

  3. sugruerm says:

    I intend having this read in my service on Sunday for my congregation to ponder. In this prayer/poem I recognise core truths beautifully expressed, but personally I feel that with any freedom comes responsibility, and this includes a measure of sensitivity and respect for what others hold dear.

  4. Maren says:

    That is absolutely true, Rosemary. You may tell the folks to whom you read it that I wrote it at the moment when there was still a hostage being held, and before 17 simple praying people were killed in mosques in “retaliatory” fire bombs, which has has very little press coverage. There are core truths but also many of them.

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