Wild Lectionary: No Fence Can Hold

Photo credit: Dylan van Dyke Brown

15th Sunday after Pentecost
Proper 17(22)B

Song of Solomon

By Cheryl Bear

he said, oh lovely one
follow my deep, ancient footprints
you will find me
you will track me until i catch you
i will always stand up for you
you remind me of a spirited young appaloosa
no fence can hold you
you’re blinding, dazzling
like trying to look at a river
flashing with sunlight

my friends brought me medicine from soil
scraped from the claws of a great bear
taken from the heart of the mountains
to make me strong and brave
but nothing is better than the scent of this man
he brings that outside fragrance inside
he holds himself strong to a most vulnerable place
like running on ice in spring

Cheryl Bear is Nadleh Whut’en from the Dakelh Nation and Dumdenyoo Clan (Bear Clan) in central British Columbia. A community leader, band councilor, and theologian, Cheryl is also an award-winning singer-songwritier who seeks to share Indigenous life—the joy, sorrow, faith, and journey—through story and song.

“No Fence Can Hold” is excerpted from Unsettling the World: Biblical Experiments in Decolonization (reviewed here) a Genesis to Revelation anthology by Indigenous and Settler collaborators that challenges colonial narratives in the text and in the contributors lived contexts.

Wild Lectionary, a weekly reflection on land, creation and environmental justice themes in the texts of the revised common lectionary, is curated by Laurel Dykstra, gathering priest of Salal + Cedar, Coast Salish Territories.

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