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Poet Meg Freitag explores the duality of the human experience through her poem which illuminates Genesis 6:5-9:17.

Genesis 6:5-9:17

Once to Speak of His Brightness


Meg Freitag


Curated by: 

Kent Shaw



Image by Giorgio Trovato

Primary Scripture

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I find myself going back again and again to this idea of duality, and how one can feel despair over the state of the world, regret over choices they’ve made, disappointment over unmet expectations, etc., and yet still experience moments of profound joy, gratitude, delight simultaneously. A person can do a horrible thing and still be loveable. A perpetrator can also be a victim. People are burdened with conflicting desires all day long. The desire to be cared for versus the desire to be free, for instance. Or the desire to be respected versus the desire to be liked.

I’ve long been preoccupied with the Noah’s Ark story. About God commanding the deluge, and what happens to Noah and his family after the flood. I think it’s an incredible narrative with incredible imagery. But it’s also deeply unsettling. There’s so much going on in this part of Genesis that is so confusing, even unfathomable at times, particularly the moments in which God seems to contradict Himself. I wonder if perhaps coming to terms with the irreconcilably dual nature of selfhood and desire is necessary for all acts of creation.

Spark Notes

The Artist's Reflection

Meg Freitag was born in Maine and currently lives in Austin, Texas. She has a BA from Sarah Lawrence College and an MFA from UT’s Michener Center for Writers, where she was a finalist for the 2015 Keene Prize for Literature. Her work has appeared in Tin House, Boston Review, Indiana Review, Day One, and Narrative, among others.

Meg Freitag

About the Artist

Meg Freitag

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