Two Poems from Micheal O’Siadhail’s ‘Testament’

(Alexandr Podvalny/Unsplash)

 

30

With mother’s milk the hushaby
All will be well no need to cry—
O promise me she didn’t lie.

Although we know of death’s goodbye,
We swear a love that will not die—
O promise me that we don’t lie.

Eternities of joy deny
Time’s ruthless arrow on the fly—
O promise that they do not lie.

We laugh and laughing you’re nearby
All fun is reaching for your sky—
O promise that it doesn’t lie

Here under your eternal eye,
I want to trust your lullaby—
O promise that you do not lie.

 

67

The morning’s heavy sky is closed and fraught
With snow that won’t allow the dawn to flush
A gloom that in my youth I’d often fought.

Almighty, I’ve no knock-down proof of you—
You’re far beyond the reach of any thought,
All logic fails, no argument will do,

No image can contain you, no similitude.
Beyond our being, words now falter too—
Superlatives compare, infinitude

Here stands apart from all we can define
And every name I give you still elude;
No matter how I try you hold the line.

I know no one can see your face and live,
Allow me to hear your voice, give me a sign!
Although you’re never argumentative

Whatever you desire you will disclose
In words; insisting on the figurative,
You’re poet-God who will not speak in prose

But sends allusive lines from high-command
With metaphors refusing to foreclose
The mystery of how you show your hand.

But now the sun has dared a kindled blush—
I listen for your voice as here I stand
Unsandalled still before your burning bush.

Published in the September 2022 issue: 
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Micheal O’Siadhail is Distinguished Poet-in-Residence at Union Theological Seminary. His works include The Five Quintets, Collected Poems, and One Crimson Thread. His new collection, Testament, will be published this month by Baylor University Press.

Also by this author
Poem | The Time that's in It

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