Prayer in my Pocket

images“You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. I will be found by you,” declares the LORD, “and will bring you back from captivity.] I will gather you from all the nations and places where I have banished you, and will bring you back to the place from which I carried you into exile.”
-Jeremiah 29:13-14

By Dee Dee Risher

Into my daughter’s pocket,
I slip two dollars to buy milk on her way home after school,
kiss her, and say a blessing over her.
This is our custom.

Into my pocket,
I slip a grocery list, my phone,
a key.

In Kabul, today, someone’s father
will have to go out. Into his pocket
he will slip a paper:
Name. Address.
Telephone of close family member.
Blood type.

In case he must be identified
by a stranger, he slips his coffin
in his pocket and goes out.

On a hillside in Gallilee, the Gerasene man called Legion,
long solitary, the one whom no one can bind,
sits among graves of the dead,
holding the demons in his body.
The teacher steps from the boat.
Demon-possessed as he is, the Gerasene runs to him.

The prophet promised, O God,
that if I sought you, I could find you.
(Only if I sought you with all my heart.)
That then you would
bring me back from exile to home.

O God, we live among graves and terror;
Unfettered violence either upholds
our lives in their comfortable places
Or destroys them at a whim.
Chasms lie between us
though we know how deep they are;
how costly.

It is so hard to become a vessel of love.
Today I will try again.
I will seek you with my whole heart,
Again I will pray
For peace, to bring the father home safely,
to hold this fragile world closer to itself,
so it hears its own heart beating.

3 thoughts on “Prayer in my Pocket

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