Jordan

... redeem the life my hate has missed...

I.

It might as well be a gulf
or sea or ocean-vast
or sodden-world that felt His wrath
this Jordan which
mere minor fork
of some high up there even greater work
of He who taunts with barbs
from mouths
only I can see or sound.

Without a sling to leave my home
of eight years full and all I’ve known
is dust upon my sleeve
and glare within my sight
and sand to sag my might
which though I loathe and now detest
am but ruined to know what’s best
for me and little mine:
to cross in time
before rocks give way
to bleaker day and silt-remains
my will to linger on through
heat and drought and snake
and nothing good at all to slake this thirst
for want of – if not better – then a little less worse,
but against those beasts who lurk
the banks
have only words
and stones to hurl against their swords?

II.

What foul bent this sleepless strove
to press my pain
into those I love
and best love me,
especially she
who steadfasts my soul
against the shoals
of a darkened eternity?