The Garden of Eden
Deborah Beach Giordano
© October 11, 2009
Once upon a time,
in a land far away,
there was a perfect Garden.
watered by clear-running rivers,
and occasional gentle rains.
Everything was beautiful
and soft and good and mild,
even the weather was always fine;
lushly-green trees arched into the sky,
and bright flowers covered the ground.
The soil was rich and dark,
and every good thing
grew there in profusion;
there was no word for ‘need’
for everyone had enough.
It was magical,
this blessed place,
there was no hurt or fear;
all the wild creatures were tame,
and snakes could talk.
“Things are not as they seem,
there’s a hidden treasure
if only you will look.”
And so we tasted sweet freedom
and bitter responsibility.
Our new-found knowledge
we immediately mis-used,
the instant it was given
with lies and disguises as we tried
to hide our true nature from God.
Which brings us to today;
exiled to the land of angst,
always yearning for what is past;
longing for our lost holy ignorance,
and carefree days gone by.
But hear me, children!
Don’t you weep;
dry your eyes and lift your heads.
Think again about where you are
and cut that snake some slack.
What if God is always loving
and, knowing us all-too-well,
planted the lesson we needed to learn
right where we’d find it:
hidden in plain sight?
Perhaps the dangerous tree
was put there just on purpose;
its fruit ripe and rich and sweet
hanging at eye level,
with a sibilant salesman beneath.
The Creator gave us our independence —
whether we wanted it or not —
booting us out of the nest
so we could spread our wings
and soar like eagles.
Made in the image of holiness,
we are heirs to this glorious kingdom:
guardians of God’s sacred trust —
yet we kick and scream
and bemoan our “miserable” fate.
And how, I wonder, does God feel
about the pity party we give ourselves,
instead of rejoicing in who we are
and standing strong and tall and proud,
with grateful, loving hearts.
Is Eden only a blissful dream-garden
a tale of “what might have been”
when we and the earth were young —
or a template to remind us
of the possible and eternally true?
Rather than spend our lives wondering
Where is heaven? and
How can we get to Paradise?
We can readily “unearth” it —
right under our own two feet.