Why Have You Forsaken Us?

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Contributor: Vela Damon

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they believe he carries the moon
in his pocket, and scatters the
stars from his hand.

it is his whisper that invites
the day, his melody that
gentles the night.

He is God, creator, ruler,
Father, and every man
they will ever love.

I have delighted in the name

while others have held
his heart and his hand,

what other had held his seed
in their belly? each flutter and
kick a revelation, each push and
pain an agony worth bearing, if
only to witness his joy over
each pink-wrapped bundle,

each tottering first step,
wished-on candle,
frosting-smeared cheek.

what other has heard
the waver in his voice
as the first yellow bus
pulls away, the tiny hand
wave-wave-waves behind
the glass?

what other can recall these moments
that make up a life?

how has he allowed this trespasser
into our most private places, while I
still wear his name and his ring and
the imprint of his fingers?

how has another seed grown into
the shape of _my_ children?

and how do I tell them that the man who
carries the moon in his pocket and the
stars in his hand will no longer
whisper the day into being?

that God, creator, ruler,
Father will no longer
calm the night with
his melody—

too far off to hear, now,
no matter how desperately they listen.

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Vela's short stories have recently appeared in 101 Words, Linguistic Erosion and The Subterranean Quarterly. She lives in Texas with two humans, two dogs and one cat.


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