For everyone who has ever had a bout with sadness, uncontrollable emotions, or whatever gets you down and out, here is a poem I wrote in the hospital. It's about the loneliness you feel when you're in sorrow or turmoil, when neither God nor loved ones seem able to help. You hit your knees like you're supposed to, and you ask his help but no burning bush arrives. Maybe God is just waiting for you to be quiet, go to sleep, so he can bring you peace.
Where is God when the brainstorm strikes
the gray jelly slammed with a hammer on the anvil
and gray jelly pieces flying everywhere?
Where is God then? Is he smoking a cigar
in the Bahamas, tapping his toe to the gospel choir?
Where is God when the brainstorm batters down
the wood house I live in, hurling me into the maelstrom
of clouds, black as sin, flailing like flotsam
in a tornado, with no safe zone to run to?
Was God on my shoulders as I stood in the sun
on the hospital's smoking deck, puffing,
puffing, puffing at my last cigarette, waiting like a dog
to be let in at the back door of his home?
Was he there or camping at Big Sur in a blue tent
with his angelic hosts, those giants of faith
who walked through seas and tore down cities
with a trumpet? Did they smile at my trifling pain?
Did God come down in human form as my husband
tapping his foot like a man in a therapist's office
and tapping the sports page on his knee
telling me he loves me as he watches the clock?
Maybe he is at home with the kittens and dogs
stretched out on the couch, serene
among my watercolors, the dusty books,
dreaming of Afghanistan, and peace.
Where is God in this place, lonely as two bones
on a sand dune? Is he lurking in the hallways
like a night watchman until I go to sleep at last
and then he will slip in the door and heal me?
Chris Alba (c) 2009
Song from the Silence
1 day ago