after babel

meditation on Parashat Noah,
Genesis 6:9-11:32

because there’s nothing left
to do but sail over our worries
in this box that floats
sail over our losses
even when we’re feeling
so punished inside
this rocking darkness—until
finally we receive
through our eye-hole windows
some light, some sense
the drift waters are receding

so we send out
winged ones—raven, dove—
to search—new life beginning?
and find it, stepping down
wonder struck
upon wet ground
seeds we saved dropping
through our fingers

then everything grows
again exactly the way
it did before
we were told
there was nothing
left to do but build
the ark and wait

and now the voice
inside echoes all around us
promising to guide us
with rainbows
with stories
even as our buildings
begin to tower

over us, even as we lose
the words that help us
listen to each other
even as we are forced
to invent new words
to name every thing
that will happen next

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