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My name is caught in my throat. I reach in and tug, lightly at first and then with more force, until it ribbons out from my mouth. With this cloth, I'll cool your brow when the heat is too much, I will wave it in the air like a flag signaling no surrender ever, I will hang it on my door so that you know this house will welcome you. I will send it out into the desert where it will find Jacob and Sarah and the traveling temple that has been dismantled and reassembled more times than there are stars. This voice of mine is stuck tonight, words falling everywhere as I prepare for the Sabbath, sweeping piles of debris from the ground, reaching into my own throat to make a clearing, and the sound that comes is anguish, is grief, is looking at the crevices I've neglected, of burying my face in the flowers after rain and calling it prayer.
Copyright 2020 Jena Schwartz.
Jena Schwartz is a poet, writer and writing coach who lives in Amherst, Massachusetts.