Psalm Ghazal I
Touch the cheek of a child and God comes in through the fingers.
Open your mouth, and the devil comes in or the devil goes out.
Flatter with your tongue the wine and then the hollow inside my hip.
At the request of your lips, my mourning turns to dancing.
Only those who do not share their wine have enemies.
I have extra wine; no one plots my death but I.
You have always heard the words of my groaning.
At the gates of death, wait for me. And for the clear bell.
Psalm Ghazal II
Why are You so far from my kneeling thoughts?
For the length of my days, will this be so?
Anger gives iron to the blood. Without it,
we’d have no strength to lift up goodness.
Count the fingers on your right hand.
That many more times than Christ you’ve tracked ’round the sun.
God made the trees and the trees are the wind’s harp.
What song will you choose for your heart’s dialogue?
When you are buried, love, the dust will sing out;
the flowers will cup no bitterness from your bones.
The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.