Eli, Eli, lema sbachthani?

Spring has slowly turned the corner into summer
and much needed rains have stopped, grass
on the hills will quietly turn to yellow in
the sun; I’ve grown accustomed
to alone and solitude is my
friend, I cannot really
stay long away
from silence
clinging
to
memories
of things, people
and places completely
gone whose names live
on only in my mind and mean
nothing to those around me like
an old soldier telling his war stories
I have become, the one I once ridiculed
in the arrogance of my youth when I was
immortal like everyone else under thirty five
not afraid to die for honor or justice or patria
god forbid we lived for other people’s lies from
one to the next our morals were the nomads of
a vast desert we only saw in the bloom of spring
after the flash floods and freezing hail that only deserts
know before whom all things pale; will my camel be waiting
for me at dawn’s light when the rising sun puts dark to flight
too long have I groped through the night finding nothing worthy
of the divine; what gift, what sacrifice shall I present to Him when
the time comes; I lie awake at night feeling the emptiness inside and
all around me wondering why my spirit will not budge, it stubbornly clings
to me like a mollusk on a rock after the tide has gone out in search of the moon
come liberate me sheik, I tire of this perpetual state of ignorance like a cart horse
with blinders on, I see only what I want and not what is all around me all the time
come knock me off my perch and teach me how to climb or better yet to fly
because that’s where I belong among the birds next time their parliament
is in session, recess should be over soon; we are already nearing June
I so desperately want to belong and know what it is to be happy once
again since bitterness has bled me dry and left me poor of spirit
I was so close, so near it, like a pilgrim robbed outside Mecca
before I made it there; I’m walking with bare cracked feet
and a hair shirt doing penance through life
come get me, wake me up and hold
me tight and wrap me in dawn’s
light when birds sing to you
let me know their joy and
that’s my simple prayer
I’ll ride it to the end
why have thou
abandoned
me

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