refugee

You shall not wrong a sojourner or oppress him,

for you were sojourners in the land of Egypt.

-Exodus 22:21

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For the New Year

“For the New Year, 1981”

I have a small grain of hope— one small crystal that gleams clear colors out of transparency.

I need more.

I break off a fragment to send you.

Please take
this grain of a grain of hope so that mine won’t shrink.

Please share your fragment so that yours will grow.

Only so, by division, will hope increase,

like a clump of irises, which will cease to flower unless you distribute
the clustered roots, unlikely source—
clumsy and earth-covered—

of grace.

 

-Denise Levertow