The Donkey

Tossed to and fro

Pulling to the opposite

Side that Balaam did.

The donkey had been this agitated before,

But never before had he been able to say,

In a human tongue:

“You silly man!

What kind of prophet are you

To force a donkey 

To do your will?”

“And what kind of donkey 

Are you to speak to me

In my tongue?” responded Balaam.

“I’ve brayed at you for years,

But you never listened,” said the donkey.

“Now that I can speak in a human tongue

Would you like to know what I think?”

“I care not what you think!” said Balaam 

“I am waiting for God to tell me

Whether I should curse or not curse

The tribes of Israel.

“And why do you think I can 

Speak at all?” said the donkey.

“Hasn’t it occurred to you

That God is speaking 

This moment through me?

You can waste your time

Pulling me to and fro as usual

Or you can listen to what 

I have to say.”

Balaam sighed.  “So tell me”

“You are not to curse the people of Israel.

Rather, you are to bless them.”

“Bless them?  Really?

That cantankerous people?

You cannot possibly be God 

If you are suggesting such a thing.”

With that, Balaam’s foot 

Was caught in the stirrup

And he fell off the donkey,

Who dragged the prophet along

Until Balaam cried for mercy.

The donkey was succinct.

“You are to bless the Israelites.

And you must not reveal your source.

If you do, your King Balak 

And his entourage will chase you away,

Thinking you a madman

For even suggesting a donkey could speak.”

“But you have spoken just now!” cried  Balaam.

In response, the donkey simply brayed

But he did let Balaam dust himself off

And climb back on.

It was some distance from 

Where Balaam needed to be

To report God’s decision

And he needed to arrive before sunset,

For it would soon be shabbat.


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