AUGUST LAMENTATION

Lord it's hot. 
The words won't come.
It hasn't rained
in weeks, Lord.
O Lord
have you forgotten us?

Down here
we are dying.
Everyone has guns
and saws; the river
has a pipeline
pointed at its head.

Down here
we un-knit your quilt
faster than your hands:
every twenty minutes
a species disappears.
We blame someone else.

My knees hurt from kneeling
at altars you no longer grace:
dead forests, churches
cushions, rugs.
Prayers rattle in the ditches
mean as snakes

and I writhe in bed
instead of sleep, repeating
myself -- look. Look
what I have become:
slack with fear, mad with grief
and shame, a bush

that burns and does not burn,
does not know its name --
o if you cannot weep for us
then weep, Lord, for your trees.
Send rain. Save
one thing you have made.


E. D. Watson

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