Today's poem is by Christine Beck
This is Not a Prayer
This is Not a Prayer of Thanks.
If it were, it would burst with gratitude for sun,
its limpid rays on peonies in May,
the acrid underwaft of zinnia or marigold,
a furtive lurking.
If it were, it would utter thanks for what I held,
the baby spit-up on my shoulder, perpetual rocking
from one foot to the other, packed tight as in a rowboat,
adrift in circles, no destination but each other.
This is Not a Prayer for Explanation.
If it were, it would wonder why the scales
of justice seem oddly balanced, why the rain still falls
so equally on the just and the unjust.
If it were, it would wonder why the years of standing by,
attending to small rituals, have gone unremarked;
why Christ returned to show the men the holes that breached his hands,
yet never thought to find his mother.
This is Not a Prayer of Surrender.
If it were, there'd be no need to weed the garden,
manicure its borders, choke out dandelions or bittersweet,
the questions about who loved whom, who left, or died,
or why, would drain of zest, their power to energize.
If it were, there'd be no words, no liturgy,
no cry for justice or reward: no answer but in mystery,
a slice of dark, the closet door ajar.
Copyright © 2014 Christine Beck All rights reserved
from Blinding Light
Reprinted by Verse Daily® with permission
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