Voice of the Stranger


God speaks, and God is to be heard, not only on Sinai, not only in my own heart, but in the voice of the stranger. Thomas Merton

Holy night,
human speech ceasing,
leaves whispering, praising
marsh-reeds swaying
in the gusty breath of God.

Throughout the hot day, lusting
tongues lashed; verbs clashed
through the busy lanes. Fear filled us
as we sought the hidden path.

Just listen
to the night-
song of dark meadows;
spring-swollen showers,
tears of passion,
engorge the sterile land.

Oh, hear the stranger sing
through these dry, city streets,
tell tales of strange
and ponderous deeds,

songs of frogs
who, once loved,
become kings!


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