For Luke 13:10-17, often called ‘The Bent-Over Woman’ — Guest post, Gerardo Oberman

Another poem, appropriate for tomorrow’s lectionary reading from Gerardo Oberman in english translation is by Robert Jordan, from England.

You are free!

Bent by the cruelty of lifestyles that have no dignity,
By impositions that weight too much,
By cultural heritage that pull us down,
By secrets we have been forced to keep
And guilt which is not ours, but we carry still,
By traditions we dare not let loose,
And creeds we repeat with no conviction,
By words kept for too long,
And because we don’t know how to look people in the eye,
For not standing up to injustice,
Because we have neither received or given enough hugs,
And have not lain on the grass a bit more
Or forgotten to look up to the stars,
And have hid for too long from all the things we fear,
For not asking for help when we needed help,
Or not been allowed to grown freely and
Have been forced to walk on our knees,
Because we were led to believe it was better to
Drag along and give up hope than to stand defiant
Resisting all oppression and all tyranny.

Bent we walk through life
Expecting alms from a system
That has marginalized and excluded,
That doesn’t heal or liberate or save,
Condemning people to walk facing the ground.
Bent even in churches under the yoke of
Theologies that alienate and
Preaching that bends faith even more,
Invalidating any possibility of a
Liberating spirituality.
Bent we walk in our inter-personal relationships
Victims of patriarchies and fundamentalisms
Which rejoice in seeing people lick the boots al
Their false gods.

Suddenly Jesus walks in, the amazing Jesus,
He extends his hand and says
“let no one deceive you,
Lie to you, exclude you,
Avoid you from becoming who you can be.
In spite of all the powers that want
To keep you bent, defeated
You are set free. You are free!

Nobody, ever again, will bend us.

¡Quedas libre!

Encorvados y encorvadas andamos por la crueldad
de formas de vivir que no dignifican,
por imposiciones que pesan más de la cuenta,
por herencias culturales que son un lastre,
por secretos que nos han obligado a callar,
por culpas que no son nuestras, pero cargamos,
por tradiciones que no nos animamos a soltar,
por repetir credos que ya no creemos,
por palabras que guardamos demasiado tiempo,
por no saber mirar a los ojos de las personas,
por no plantarnos a tiempo frente a lo injusto,
por no recibir ni dar suficientes abrazos,
por no recostarnos más en el césped
o mirar de tanto en tanto hacia las estrellas,
por escondernos de aquello que tememos,
por no pedir ayuda cuando era preciso hacerlo,
porque no nos han dejado crecer en libertad,
porque nos han forzado a andar de rodillas,
porque nos hicieron creer que era mejor
arrastrarse y resignarse que ponerse en pie
y resistir toda forma de opresión y toda tiranía.

Encorvados y encorvadas andamos por la vida,
esperando la limosna de un sistema
que margina y que excluye,
que no sana ni libera ni salva,
que condena a vivir de cara al suelo.
Encorvados y encorvadas andamos en las iglesias,
bajo el yugo de teologías que alienan
y de prédicas que curvan más y más la fe,
invalidando cualquier posibilidad
de una espiritualidad liberadora.
Encorvados y encorvadas andamos
en nuestras relaciones interpersonales,
víctimas de los patriarcados y de los fundamentalismos
que se regodean con vernos
lamiendo los pies de sus falsos dioses.

Hasta que aparece Jesús, maravilloso Jesús,
que nos abraza y nos dice:
“Que ya nadie te engañe
ni te mienta ni te excluya
ni te impida ser lo que quieras ser.
A pesar de todos los poderes
que quieran doblegarte y encorvarte
¡quedas libre! ¡Eres libre!”

Y ya nadie, nunca más, podrá encorvarnos.

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2 Responses to For Luke 13:10-17, often called ‘The Bent-Over Woman’ — Guest post, Gerardo Oberman

  1. Elaine Gaetani says:

    Profoundly beautiful & deeply moving! Thank you for sharing this!

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