I was circling in a dry cistern pit, when I asked the Spirit to gamble on me.
What were the chances, half-in and half-out, that I’d answer
the ad in the paper?
———————Tossed in the box by the phone, it waited.
Shame makes a hornets’ nest deep in the body.
I’d lost twenty years to illness. What were the chances I’d dress
———-and drive through the dark down to Mitton, the night before Halloween,
———-and find the door near the streetlight
———-and the room clean but shabby?
If I crawled through the eye of a needle, no one asked what I was doing so low.
The building sheltered men off the street.
On Wednesdays someone prayed for the sick.
Welcome, they said.Take a chair, sign your name on the clipboard.
———-The clock on the sandwich board closed at eight.
—————————————-I entered, last on the list.
I can tell you they asked before drawing the sign of the cross
on my forehead,
———-the walls were paneled in brown from the sixties,
———-the florescent lights buzzed.
———-I never cried.
But when the air held no shame—what were the chances?
———————-I wept, right there, in the kingdom of kindness.
Was it a roof for the sky,
as it fell?
———-It was more
like a door
———-for what passes.
Perhaps I made it a window,
———————-for the eye. To wake. See,
where the wind passes through.
There is time for the wind to pass through impossible places.
Where solitude cuts, there is time
to look up at the sky
and begin talking with Joseph the dreamer who reached into the dark
and pulled the sky-riddles down like a map.
They meant it for evil but God meant it for good.
The spirit yearns for the vast—
but the pit wants a circle of sky, the size of a rim.
Hineni, said Moses in the desert, when the burning bush called out his name.
———-Here I am, listening.
Hineni, said Abraham to the voice that had promised the stars.
Hineni, said a great cloud of witnesses, all of them, waiting.
Open the gate and I will enter the field
———-where the wild grapes tangle on fence rows
———————-and the finches glean seeds from thistles,
in all places, where the wind passes through,
Hineni, Here I am, listening.