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Renee EmersonApril 18, 2024

When my daughter broke her foot, misshapen
scream at the bottom of the slide we built ourselves
in the joy of our children’s joy,

I wondered if God feels this too—
His cliffs and those that slip off them,
His oceans swiftly closing up lungs
like a thief in a jewelry box, emptied.

So many beautiful creatures devouring
beautiful creatures, even as some of our own
bodies devour the body, cells innocent
in their hunger. I held her hand while she fell
asleep, a mercy, and skilled hands set it straight.

I forget—did God make death? Or only
the knowledge of it—hanging on a tree, growing
brighter in the sun, so as to catch the eye.

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