Sunday, May 31, 2009

From an Upper Room

Sitting on a street bench, acting homeless
Thinking 'bout the women I never knew
Trying hard to pray, my prayers thoughtless
How can anybody pray without you?

Life is getting tighter, people sounding
Bored and boring; my spirit's in the lurch
Everywhere the careless sins are mounding
All I want to know, friends, is where's the church?

Someone's gonna help me, someone broken
Free me from the bond of the upper room
Getting to my head the word soft-spoken
Shattering this heart of untimely gloom.

I'm going to the land of power and glory,
Bidding John the Baptist a short goodbye,
Going to retell a living story --
If I only had the guts just to die!

Outside on the town the trees are blowing
Unexpected rain, it comes softly down
Some can know which way the winds are going
Others only feel the force and the sound.

Stranded on a one-way track to nowhere
Giving all I've gotten or none at all
I make believe I'm home and never go there
Practice how to stumble but not to fall.

Sitting on a sidewalk sideshow corner
Thinking that the future day nearly looms
Gonna pray for her but never mourn her
Nothing left to see in the upper room.


Anonymous said...

A very interesting new take on the tale of Rapunzel. Finding the upper room empty, except for a homeless person conjures up a surprising twist. How the author turns a fairy tale into a work similar to No Exit by Sartre is quite an accomplishment. Very insightful to today's economic conditions.

Anthony Zuba said...

Anonymous, your interpretation is creative but wrong. This song is not based on Rapunzel. I've never read the tale of Rapunzel. And I've never read Sartre. This song may be speaking to you about the economy, but I was not writing about the economy.

This piece has to do with Pentecost and the Holy Spirit. It has to do with the kingdom of God. It's about resisting God's gifts of grace and love. It's about rejection, dejection, and disengagement from all that is good and holy and true. It's about the struggle to live fully alive in God for others.

The upper room is not only a physical place. It is also a state of mind, an interior slavery. We live in it wherever we go. We want to leave it, but we do not.

Anonymous said...

Perhaps an abolitionist movement could free you from your upper room. The only question is, what would you do if you could leave that room behind? Is that the reference to acting homeless?