Hosea Nth Degree Poem

God tells Hosea Go marry Gomer:
love her like I love my wayward people
though violence dirties their beauty, though
lies and idols negate their devotion.

God tells Hosea Go marry a whore:
though she neglects every child she gives you,
love her like I love my shame-filled people
for whom all my compassion is aroused.

They break all bounds; bloodshed follows bloodshed;
all officials fall; none call on God;
they call all prophets fools; their sins engulf them.
The land mourns: all birds, animals, fish die.

Yet You cannot abandon Your loved ones.
You call Hosea back to husbanding:
Meet her in the desert; forgive, restore
as I betroth them to me forever.

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