What is fulfillment? I was recently reminded of this poem—the first thing I ever posted on this site, and probably my favorite of all the poems I have written. It is my attempt to delve into Psalm 1.
This poem is part of the “Psalter Project” I started with my sister, Lindsay Feldmeth Westra, back in 2012. We were creating our own poems reflecting on (sometimes paraphrasing) each psalm in order. She wrote the even numbered psalms, and I wrote the odds. You can see several more of our psalms here.
“Fulfilled” (Psalm 1) Fulfilled, replete, at ease in your own skin Comes with the company you keep, and when You will not walk with whining, vicious voices, You won’t stand still with habits, viscous vices, And you won’t sit and sneer, then you’ll be there Where you will trace God’s tracks with gentle care Replay God’s plans and laugh God’s laughs and share Your sleep with such an unsuspected spouse And wake to find his whisper in your mouth Then you will leaf out, lovely, like a tree From mulch to twig, substantial, solid, sure Tuck your toes in sod, as seasons plod Spread and stretch and sprout and swell with fruit But other people, those who won’t want God, Will drift and fade and wander in the cold Shrivel, shrink, and wither, thin and sad, With fraying threads of branches, fetal trunks When time cracks open and we go to God Transplanted off this page into the woods Your roots will cling, your lungs fill, you will stand! But they will blur and fade and never breathe Not filled up. Never filled full.
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