Tonight we sleep
with the lights on
to keep our ancient enemy at bay:
white bulbs blue screens glowing
against the night.
There is no rhyme
& no reason, only
the certainty that the earth is against us,
that daily survival is our highest calling.
Amidst the dark nights and fierce winds,
let no one hint
that we caved
or shuddered.
No! Let them
call us heroes
when we claw out from rubble & dust.
Then they will praise the human spirit.
They will ask “How did you stay strong?”
and we will lie about our determination
when in fact we were scared shitless
and the only
choice when
you’re so very
terrified is to
live and wait
and breathe
to discover if
continued agony or miraculous joy awaits.
Oklahoma … Ivory Coast … Bangladesh …
people wait, barely breathing, crushed by
bricks & mortar & injury & death’s proximity.
Afterward, when the cameras look hungrily
for stories of faith & survival, don’t tell them
that God died under the rubble hours ago.

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