But one that isn’t mine,
Could with joy express the grief
Of the lands I leave behind;
Could with peace express the pain
Of the days and prayers and tears
That within this shell of clay
Laugh and boldly face the years;
Of Tomorrow when it comes
Oh, it has no power on me!
I am beaten, I am worn,
I am ended, I am free.
I live on eternally;
I am dying, I will die,
It’s a bitter birth indeed!
As in labour for a child
As in gasping in a dream
Like a drowning man needs water do I need this year I’ve seen!
Twirl around and face tomorrow
Take away what wasn’t mine
Am I healed and understanding?
If you ask, I’ll say I’m fine
Oh, this language cannot tell you
(There’s a word, I’m sure, Some Where)
… Might be “man” It might be “woman”
But for God’s sake! It’s a prayer.
Pack my boxes. I am moving.
Will not cry. I cannot stay.
Won’t wear pain upon my shoulder,
I will leave it packed away.
When you see that I am hopeful
It won’t be a lie you see —
For both sides of death and living are compatible in me.
And the love that I can give you
Won’t begrudge your error or pain;
For a sword has pierced my own heart,
Yet I live, to breed again.
— Poem by Rani Kaye, all rights reserved