...seeing the peace of sinners

        --Psalm 72

That day he made raspberry jam.

He’d picked the berries

two days earlier.

Second harvest of red and golden

from the berry farm

a couple of miles from his home.

The frozen kind.

That afternoon, walking the development

where construction workers with hammers

built homes in the uprooted, torn-out orchard

where his grandchildren gleaned apples,

he felt wind blowing dirt from backhoes,

and smoke in his eyes from Goat Rocks Fire

where he still hiked and skied,

he remembered—he and his wife

were serving meals that evening at Camp Hope,

the shelter. He’d have to pick it up.

These men, los marjinados, wearing

hooded orange sweatshirts for sun protection.

The builders. Not the homeless.

His wife had told him

Julie had made sixteen loaves

of bread that day. He’d been reading

the 72d Psalm for two weeks.

He couldn’t get past it.

From the Coptic Psalter. That, too.

He had failed to move on.

But Thou art my portion.

That one came to him

from Sandy Hook seven years ago.

Mi herencia.

Marked in his bilingual Santa Biblia.

All this moving and he’s still stuck.

He would take some jam

with him for Julie to the shelter.

Jim Bodeen

11 October 2022

On the street where He lives


On the street where He lives

Released from writing

Not from the practice

Jim Bodeen

5 October 2022