Threading the needle

First, unpack your camel.

Divest it of its commodities:

sugar, salt, and spices,

unguents, oils, perfume,

all excisable goods must go;

hold a trunk sale if you must.

Next, take off its defences;

not only the cannons and

the turret (hump) tower guns, 

but the concealed snipers and 

the heavy armour and

the compact package of last resort.

Strip it of its saddles,

blankets, bridle, and bit;

it may want to run at this point.

Hold it still while you 

draw out its marrow,

unpick its bones, carefully

roll its empty skin as tightly

as you can.

Eye the needle. Realize

this is not going to happen.

Reassemble your camel;

let it go, poor creature;

this is not about the camel.

Think again.

About Rosalind C Hughes

Rosalind C Hughes is a priest and author living near the shores of Lake Erie. After growing up in England and Wales, and living briefly in Singapore, she is now settled in Ohio. She serves an Episcopal church just outside Cleveland. Rosalind is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing , and Whom Shall I Fear? Urgent Questions for Christians in an Age of Violence, both from Upper Room Books. She loves the lake, misses the ocean, and is finally coming to terms with snow.
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