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HYMN 6

 

Oil, flowing down
over the king, conferred
the right to rule. A cloud.
descending from the skies,
wrapped itself about
Christ, Who is Head
of all mankind, and God
Himself, descending on
the mountaintop, bestowed
brightness upon Moses, as,
symbolically, Solomon
took brightness from a horn
full of oil, and thence,
from the one People to the many
nations, kingship spread.
Instead of the few, the multitude
are to be anointed,
are to be cleansed.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

Zechariah saw two olive trees
in a vision, which were as springs ­
the one giving forth the authority
of priests, the other of kings.
In the time of the Captivity,
two of the olive tree's branches gave
oil to keep the light of piety
alive among a race of slaves.
And when they were made free,
the People who were rotten
with the pollution of their slavery,
received atonement and redemption.
Now all the peoples, everywhere,
polluted and oppressed,
receive from their kind Maker,
peace of mind and cleanliness.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

Of all the trees that died
in the flood, the olive
it was that was the first
to rise again, in this,
resembling the Lord,
the first of all humanity to rise
up from the dead.
The olive tree passed
through the water, and before
all else, it was revived,
giving its leaf
as a pledge that the world
was saved. The dove
found it and desired
it; that strange bird
that searches out our land, announced
that something had survived,
and through its mouth,
the olive tree
sent us a greeting.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

The olive tree passed through the waves and rose
as a king and sent its messenger, bringing news
of peace to those who were closed up, and those
that had been silent sang, joyfully.
The leaf that it gave consoled
the prisoners, bringing light
to every eye. It told
Noah that anger was in flight
and mercy victorious. Though the leaf
itself was silent, still, it filled
with joy hearts that were full of grief.
The leaf was a mirror that revealed
that God and the world were reconciled.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

When He entered triumphantly
into Jerusalem, He went
down from the Mount of Olives,
and the palm and the olive tree
were stripped of their branches and danced
in the hands of the multitude, honouring
the One Who was to go,
in captivity up the hill,
outside Jerusalem, stripped
of His garments; and just as the oil
from the olive tree lights the lamp,
so, in the hands
of the children, the palms
gave them glory, as they sang,
in their sweet voices, songs
of praise to the Lord.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

The olive tree was like John,
going before the Lord, a sign
that belongs to the signified, and when
the King, the Anointed, shone
forth, the olive tree went out to Him
to greet Him; he was stripped
and his branches divided in the hands
of children, just as it was prophesied
He too would be stripped and lots cast
for His clothes. And so,
the olive tree, laden down
with his symbols, proclaimed
the One Who was to fulfil
the symbols, and he gave a crown
to the One Who, once slain,
defeated death.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

The dove, after the flood,
brought peace to Noah, and
the dove's friend, Mary, bore
oil instead of a leaf, to prepare
the death of the Son, by pouring
over Him a jar of oil, a treasury
of symbols, flowing over
the Source of all symbols, so that,
in that moment, all
the symbols of oil were fulfilled
on the Head of the Lord.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

Creation was big with His symbols, Mary,
the Mother of God, was big with His limbs.
So He was brought forth by many wombs.
Her belly brought Him forth by travail, but
creation also was groaning, bringing
forth His symbols; He had
one Body of limbs, but another
of glory upon glory. Eternal power
does not weary. He struggled
to bring us rest, since
the creatures were so tired with bearing
the symbols of His glory; they were all
weighed down, like the womb that carried Him.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

Oil is next to priesthood, as John
was the son of a priest, he who cleared
a pathway into
ears that could no longer hear
the voice that is an icon
of the Speaker, but
this path cleared by the priest's son
opened the way for the Father's
Word; the icon of Him, Who
sent His Word, appears in Him, and He
beautifies the peoples who are ugly until
as a priest, even as Aaron
his robes, they put Him on.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

The olive tree is proud and does not fear
the lion who terrifies everyone.
When it is cold,
its leaves resist, and so
they are a type of the steadfast, holding
fast to the Christ, the Tree of Trees.
When persecutions come, those
who are always questioning fall
like leaves in the autumn.
But those who are chrismated
hold to the Christ, great Blossomer,
as the leaves of the olive tree in
winter hold to the root.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

Oil, then, is upright,
like an athlete,
and is there at the beginning
and accomplishes the race,
crowning the victor
as Christ, my brothers,
won us our freedom.
The athlete is running
in hopes of gaining
a moment of praise.
But Christ, our Crown,
our Glory, our Head,
the Anointed, has freed
us from the burden
of all concern
with the endless round
of losing and winning
And praise and disgrace.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

At the beginning of the race,
the athlete smears
oil on his limbs,
and if he falls
behind his companion
he is ashamed.
The disciple who lets
his enemy past
reveals to men's eyes
the glory of the oil
that was smeared upon him
when he was baptised.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree

 

Oil makes what is disagreeable
and harsh, agreeable,
so that it knuckles under, and agrees
to comply, sweetly, with the harsher
force that has mastered it. But the Christ,
our oil of chrismation, doubled
our oppression. If we are struck
on one cheek, we must
offer the other, so that,
the harshness being doubled, so
might the sweetness, so,
instead of one mile,
we might walk two.

Blessed is He Who gave us
eyes that we might see
the meaning of the symbols of the Son
that shine in the olive tree