Mary of Sorrows

We do not in our country

niche you at corners,


crossroads, highway shrines.

But in Karen’s face as she talks of her son

whose pain will not redeem the world;

as Marguerita, whose eldest will not

survive her; in Sylvie, whose child

learned all his letters in his second year

and by age four had been condemned

to mute incomprehension,

you appear.


mother of mothers,

we know we cannot be spared;

help us bear our sorrows

and the sorrows of our children.

Help us bear.

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