Adrift on a Darkened Sea
by David Asia (March 2011)
Kevin came to see me.
He had escaped serious injury,
Only some burns on his arm
And a broken walk.
His eyes had taken refuge
Deep in his skull,
Emptying his face.
Helene asked me to take her to the Rabbi.
She hid behind dark glasses,
Buried in the hood of her oversized sweatshirt
Off the edge of the earth like a sunset.
We sat in the Rabbi’s office.
Kevin wants to know, Helene began,
If God is done taking children.
The Rabbi tried to see past her cloaking,
Into what was left of her heart.
A man, began the Rabbi,
Was afflicted with a terrible disease.
He came to see Rabbi Israel of Rizhyn.
Rabbi, the man said,
My suffering is interfering with my study and prayer.
Can you help me?
Rabbi Israel put his hand on the man’s shoulder.
How do you know, my friend, he said,
What is more pleasing to God,
Your studying or your suffering?
In the silence that followed,
Helene’s face turned to ash,
The shadow cast by grief
Circling her like a scavenger.
It will never be enough,
The Rabbi said as we left.
We can attribute purpose to suffering,
But it is still suffering.
We paused in the stillness of the old sanctuary
And inhaled the must of undisturbed air,
Chained for decades
To our previous lives.
For the first time in years,
I held her hand.
In the dark, we drove east,
Pursuing a distance sufficient
To thin her despair.
There was no moon.
I’ve never seen so many stars, she said.
To comment on this poem, please click here.
To help New English Review continue to publish interesting and original poetry such as this, please click here.
If you have enjoyed this poem and would like to read more by David Asia, please click here.
Join leaders of the American Middle Eastern community to endorse
Donald J. Trump
for President of the United States
and spend an evening with his foreign policy advisors featuring
Dr. Walid Phares
and other surprise campaign guests.
Monday October 17th
Omni Shoreham Hotel
2500 Calvert Street Northwest
Washington, DC 20008
cocktails at 6pm - dinner at 7pm
Business casual attire
$150 per person / $1500 per table
Sponsored by the American Mideast Coalition for Trump