Coming home

Coming home to the sweet familiar
I returned, a stranger.
Coming home to the soft light and sticky rain,
coming home to my familiar language, fluent words
entwined in this city’s strange and ceaseless roar.
I buy too much wine and olives
and imagine I am home.
A young black man bends down, apologizes
“excuse me, I’m sorry miss” before he’s even near me,
as he bums a half-used cigarette from the sidewalk.
I flinch anyway, and he vanishes.  I don’t like this script.
I speak Hebrew to a clerk by mistake.
This subway car and this life hurtle forward.
Another life ago I traded home for something
I can no longer define.
I’ve heard what I seek is already here,
I only have to stop searching
so damn hard.

(still in the backlog)

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mincha

this day is not my due just for being born
nor am I promised anything beyond
this breeze, this breath that right now blows through me,
the sun-tinged clouds, the placid waters ebb
below the lit-up bridge the traffic roars,
all gifts unearned, their value undefined.
I have no words, I am compelled to praise
to try, to stutter praise for grace unearned.
let me find refuge in this moment’s shelter
let there be less of me and therefore more.

 

*hebrew in title refers so the daily prayers said in the afternoon.