So often the world/ overturns in the bowl of the spoon./…And still I forgive its afflictions…

A BURDEN OF THINGS

There are built-in chambers of grace
and afflictions in the heart of things;
we enter them more often than not
when we least expect to be touched
by what we find or not find there.

In there, loving finds the lover unloved,
hoping thwarts the dreamer at every turn;
faithfulness, teetering on the cup of fate,
falls off flailing and finds betrayal instead.

In faith, these are wages of a lost paradise,
which, as twin-faced harlequins, we strive
to regain, no longer with pure passion
but perhaps haplessly in suppliant prayer
that we might receive because we are wiser
and have learned to forgive. But not forget.

—Albert B. Casuga
06-02-11