13 February 2016

Keturah: Ghost

Genesis 25:1-6

She never left;
she is still here,
filling the spaces
between you and me.
She never left;
she reappears
every time that I fail,
every time that we fight,
filling the gaps
as they widen between us -
haunting me.

She never left;
she is still here.
I hear her voice,
a whisper in my ear
that what you want is her,
what I can never be.
I see her eyes,
following me
accusing me
of stealing your love.
I feel her presence
lying between us,
cold and unyielding,
clinging to you
and pushing me away -
haunting me.

And yet I know there is no ghost -
only my fear, haunting me.
I am afraid of not reaching her standard,
afraid that you might love me less,
that when you see me you think of her
and wish you could have her instead.
I want to be free.

Set me free from insecurity
so I can love you fearlessly,
and be who I am
with no more ghosts
haunting me.


[9. / 12. February 2016]

Keturah was Abraham's other wife... and from the text it kind of looks like she became his wife after Sarah died (which means he must have been crazy old by then) - I just assumed that here. This is mainly about dealing with "the Ex" or the tendency to compare oneself... We don't read anything about Keturah in the Bible other than the children she had, so we don't know how she felt about being the new wife of a widower - but here I looked a bit into what it might be like to feel insecure about the previous wife, to the extent of actually feeling her present.

One problem with the feeling of being "haunted" by the previous wife / the ex / etc is that - I believe - in many cases (especially when we're talking about dead people) it's based on the assumption that this ex is against the new match. Which is not really fair towards her: why assume that she is cruel and unkind and jealous?

Anyway I decided to start out with the "ghost" (the other woman being a threat to the relationship, being "against it") and then move on to the realisation of what is actually going on inside, namely the fear and insecurity that turns the other woman into a threat. It's not the other woman interfering - it all comes from inside Keturah herself. What needs to be "exorcised" is the fear.

(Probably the idea to write about ghosts is the result of reading Northanger Abbey and looking up some gothic horror...)

Picture is from the Venice Haggadah... Abraham and his 3 women - Keturah is the one with the many sons, on the far right.

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