Little Altars Everywhere

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What can I hold in my hands this morning
that will not flow through my fingers?

What words can I say that will catch
in your mind like burrs, chiggers that burrow?

If my touch could heal, I would lay my hands
on your bent head and bellow prayers.

If my words could change the weather
or the government or the way the world

twists and guts us, fast or slow,
what could I do but what I do now?

I fit words together and say them;
it is a given like the color of my eyes.

I hope it makes a small difference, as
I hope the drought will break and the morning

come rising out of the ocean wearing
a cloak of clean sweet mist and swirling terns.

– Marge Piercy, “Rising in Perilous Hope”

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