“…and the waters prevailed much much upon the earth”
Thinking about grief. And loss. And tears.
I’ve heard it said that the key thing to remember about the story of the Garden of Eden is not that it happened but that it happens.
I think the same is true of the story of Noah.
We are deluged and we weep a flood of tears until our life is awash with the grief. “And it rained for forty days and forty nights…and the waters increased…and the waters prevailed and increased greatly upon the earth…and the waters prevailed exceedingly…”
Literally “much much.”
The Hebrew word is m’od. “Muchness, force, abundance.”
“…and they prevailed, the waters upon the earth, fifty, a hundred days…”
It’s as if in the fountains of the deep bursting open the earth itself wept a flood over all the loss it had experienced. A flood of the infinite muchness of grief that drowned everything.
I don’t know that we can improve on the image.
Or on the metaphor of its aftermath.
“…the fountains of the deep and the windows of heaven were stopped…the rain from heaven was restrained…the waters returned from off the earth continually…and the waters decreased continually until the tenth month…the tops of the mountains were seen…”
Grief in all its intense depths waxes and wanes.
How long it takes for us to dry out!
But even when the comforting dove returns bearing the sprig of hope, of solid ground underfoot again, your life coming to rest again on it’s highest peaks, and as you muster the courage to peek out the lone window, you see a world still dominated by water, just within more manageable, more measured bounds.
Grief remains. It always remains. It can still quickly cloud up overhead and rain a river. It still has the depths of the Marianas Trench you can get lost in, and undertows that can suddenly sweep you in and out.
But there is dry land now too.