Saturday, 23 January 2016

Hallelujah - poem by Bruce Owens c2016

My mother, she listened into this Hallelujah
with her fingers
playing with the locks of my childhood hair
in the large assembly of Hallelujah,
in the mote light streaming from upper windows of Hallelujah,
and the preacher was running back and forth
with Hallelujah in his hand, gripping it tightly
like he might lose the Hallelujah,
and he shouted Hallelujah
and all the congregation shouted amen, and Hallelujah.
My mother’s fingers running through my hair
was all soothing and hallelujah,
and right there,
my small back to the hard oak pew
in the Lord’s presence, I fell asleep,
unafraid and calm,
as my mother’s long fingers, were playing
gently with my hair… Hallelujah…
in the old Baptist church
near the tobacco barns and the park
in the Hallelujah of a Midwest town.
Later that day,
making a stew,
she put the pot on a burner,
and the flame at a slow simmer;
the smell of it filled the kitchen with Hallelujah.
Then she would go out into the colors of the day,
stepping out on the big lawn in the backyard,
and hang the clothes on the line
as the wind fluttered the leaves
of the big elm with Hallelujah.
I would see her smiling at me
as she reached for another close-pin,
and her smile is forever a Hallelujah,
to the child I was…
© 2016 by Bruce Owens

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