Day of Atonement

A sixteen-year-old girl weeping

in the dark basement room

I didn’t understand

God watched me

through the ceiling

as if it were the cover

of the golden mercy seat.

If I could have sensed anything beyond

overwhelming pain

I would have breathed in

fragrant prayer incense

felt flicked sacrificial blood

trickle down my forehead

glimpsed Yahweh’s great glory

as the bright cloud settled above me

between cherubim’s shining wings.

Instead of tears for food

I would have tasted sweet manna.

I would have traded despair

for Aaron’s budding staff of hope

with healing leaves

from the tree of life.

Today light floods the dark room inside

as my Father rips the thick curtain

top to bottom.

* I referred to these Scripture passages in this poem:

Ex. 25 & 40, Lev. 16, Ps. 42:3, Mt. 27:51, Rev. 22:2


4 thoughts on “Day of Atonement

  1. Pingback: Memory stones – Sarah Geringer

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