Saturday, March 28, 2015

Good Neighbors: 5. Friday

My prayer went unheard, but not my crying;
in my sorrow, I am both visible and invisible.

My days drift away like smoke:
my heart is so shriveled and broken,
I cannot eat, so I grow thin;
Who knows where I have been?
Or what I have done to pass the time?

I walk alone, in a sea of people,
and no one knows my pain;
how could my life perish so,
though my body be yet alive?

In the blink of an eye,
by a shot in the dark,
my child, my life, was taken from me.

All my days since flow like shadows,
and a drought withers me to my roots;
bread is like ashes on my tongue,
water is as bitter as tears;
I go up and down,
but clouds follow me ever,
taunting me with hope
for a rain that never comes.

What did she do, my child,
to meet such a fate?
What did I do to bring it on her?
How could love fail so deeply?

Can anything be done
to loosen the bonds of time
or shorten the days of this turmoil?
When shall I be changed
from pain into dust?

These days endure;
and I am but a worn rag,
but nothing changes,
all remains the same,
for years that have no end,
while I watch children not my own
grow to carry life forward.

© 2015 by Elisabeth T. Eliassen

This poem is part of a cycle based on the so-called seven Penitential Psalms. The subtitle of the cycle is “Psalms from the Streets”. This entry is based on Psalm 102, and could be subtitled, “The Bereaved.”

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