Autumn Vespers

Autumn Vespers

This graceless age meets the evening star
       With blind eyes and corked ears.
We pray before the taking of sup
       But use paper plates and drink bottled water.
 
Our children know not of our ancestors
       They do not read and seldom think
About us when we’ve gone.
       The sky grows red at dusk.
 
And yet there is hope.
       Just look in the eye of the three-year-old.
She is no longer innocent, true.
       But she is not guilty of our sins.
 
Perhaps she never will be.
       Perhaps a sea change will conspire
To wrest the wheel from the captain of this ship
       To bring us to a safe port in this gale of a new century.
 
Tonight we pray on skinned knees on the deck of a rudderless ship
       The storm’s spray anoints us anew
Its baptism is this time of sea water and blood.
       The taste of copper on our tongue during communion.
 
I believe the future may indeed be bright.
       That an unseen choir will stand in rainbow’s robes
And sing our evening song in harmonic purity, slow and easy
       And the memory of our future will be secure in love.
 
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