07 January 2016

Wise Woman of Abel: Headless

2. Samuel 20:14-22

When all run around
in panicked circles
like headless chickens,
someone must keep a clear head.

Someone must stop,
someone must think
before the heads roll,
and prevent disaster.

When men run around
like headless chickens
women must keep their heads
and talk some sense.

Why don't you stop?
Why don't you think
before the heads roll?
Do you want it this way?

Let us all keep our heads,
let us think before we act,
let us limit the destrucion
instead of acting headlessly.

You want a head?
Here, have the one
you were hunting all the while,
but spare us ours
and start using yours.


[March 2013]

I suppose my latent feminism shows itself a bit here..
Just so you know: I don't mean to say men are all stupid. Just emphasising the "wise woman" here. The "wise woman of Abel" interrupted a battle by handing over the head of the person the whole battle was about... David's army (led by Joab) was after a rebel called Sheba - so they attacked the city he was in. The wise woman asked Joab what he wanted - and gave it to him. Thus ending a battle in which a lot of innocent people would have died, which is I guess what makes her actions wise.

I played a bit with head imagery due to Sheba's head being handed over at the end. ^^

Many people think the Bible shows only two types of women: Eves (sinful, seductive, sex objects, etc) and Marys (pure, saintly, meek, perfect, etc). When people tell me that the first thing I think of is the "wise women" appearing in 1 and 2 Samuel - e.g. the "wise woman of Tekoa", or the "wise woman of Abel". There are a lot more women in the Bible too who do not fall into the "pattern" of an Eve or a Mary (take Jael for instance, or Deborah). Sadly, people who do not read the Bible assume they know what the Bible says about women, when they only know the more famous bits or what tradition has emphasised. That's the nice thing about challenging yourself to learning about all the women in the Bible, though. You uncover stories you never knew before. I can only recommend it!

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