I support Compassion


Elegy for My Daughter (3rd draft)

** This is absolutely not yet a finished product. I hope that anyone who reads this will be willing to provide insight/suggestions. Any feedback-- constructive or no, rational or no-- will be accepted and appreciated. **

And Jephthah made a vow to the LORD: “If you give the Ammonites into my hands, whatever comes out of the door of my house to meet me when I return in triumph from the Ammonites will be the LORD’s, and I will sacrifice it as a burnt offering.”

- Judges 11:30-31

Stone of my stones underneath my feet,
beneath the victors of the sounding
gravel-run drums for thousands
coming home. Altar-brown eyes
greet me, from down low, shame.
Warp and shackle me, thoughtless march,
I forgot the Philistine word for "daughter"
immediately, because
I thought it was too close to our word for "charcoal"--
worry mother for the rough burn
crack, I peal and plea-- for your forgiveness.

Like a virgin song at a long ago river,
singing, inhaled and let me watch,
your dark hair and light music on my wrinkly ears
I remember--
now play the tambourine
again. again. play it please
bring on, the flowing notes, the altar-brown eyes.
My Gd-winning hand on your shoulder
is too violent, too crushing harmony;
your hair still singing, exhaled.

"What did you see," my grandson
calls me from down low, my hair underneath
my feet, blood of my blood on the same edge.
"What did it teach you," he calls again
and I reply with laughter-- am I mad
for that Lord; shock, blaze, for God's sake.
A bushel of grain from that dream onward, but
just a wisp of your tambourine on the wind.
Salt of my salt underneath my feet,
bar me from returning again.

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