Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

Prayer during a Storm

Academic journal article Michigan Quarterly Review

Prayer during a Storm

Article excerpt

You, the strongest, you swimming in the clouds and churning

in the soil,

This storm with its electricity and crashing thunder

reminds us of your fury and disappointment.

You call us through wind and thunder, from which

all creatures tremble and hide themselves in their dens

or in cellars, the birds clinging to branches,

or huddling under the eaves of our vulnerable roofs,

the cats tearing into the mattress ticking from below.

We hear you, angry at your forge, your hammer

crashing and the bellows making the sparks fly.

We reach for our sorry ways like a willful child

reaching for a firebrand, surprised to be burnt,

astonished to feel the heat for days.

We see what you did when you dropped your

funnel onto the hillside cemetery and tossed

the headstones like a handful of broken teeth, uprooted the

yew trees

like a gardener pulling nettles from a ditch,

choosing to spare us, while exhibiting your scorn

with what's left of the dead. …

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