Qoheleth’s Seasons

For everything there is a season,
The existential preacher reminds us.
A truth that can lead us beyond reason,
Where life cannot be explained or discussed. 
Which could lead us to exclaim, "Vanity!
Why bother - it's all just chasing the wind!
So let us forget this insanity,
And eat and drink without thought of the end."
But the wind chases us, too; the Spirit
Prompting us to wrestle life's mystery
Until we are blessed, limping to limits
Of reason, past all human misery.
Grace-filled seasons leading to hard-won truths,
When faith inspires us to plant and uproot.

This is a sonnet written for my son, whose birthday we celebrate tomorrow, and whose favorite book of the bible is Ecclesiastes. (I also wrote a sonnet for my daughter on one of her favorite passages from scripture. Here it is: Habakkuk’s “Yet …”)

“Teacher” in Hebrew is Qoheleth, which is where the title of this sonnet comes from. This sonnet is also inspired by these well-known verses from Ecclesiastes:

The words of the Teacher, the son of David, king in Jerusalem. Vanity of vanities, says the Teacher, vanity of vanities! All is vanity.

Ecclesiastes 1:1-2

For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up what is planted.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-2

4 thoughts on “Qoheleth’s Seasons

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