Storm Psalm

Dear darkness. Dear where we bow our heads in disbelief.
     Dear disbelief, hardly bow our heads and
hardly speak, so we sing, such words as darkness
     shows us how on days on end. So I sing it is
not hopeless. Hurry hurry. Nor faithless—to stand
     without faith, keeping open—. Now another
so they say, thus the trees utterly are still, and the wind is,
     and what wings there are utterly still in limbs
darkened above the barn. Bow down, for this darkness
     now above cedars. Smell of mint and tincture of
torn wood-pulp, or was that the last time, yes it was.
     Take shelter, take now cover take nothing
when it is time, for ye need no Thing but—. So I say
     the mighty voice upon the waters is, glory thundereth,
twists of ivy like leather scales along a body
     of the big limbs hanging, bearing down, to break.
Older than a door, older than a holding hand. His voyce
     breaks Cedars: breaks Cedars. The last time,
now lie in the doorway, in the tub, lie down, cover
     us with blankets. Yes hurry. Dear hurry. Dear
disbelief, Great are thy bowell-mercies Lord:
     after thy judgements—. Clap now a great wing
over the barn, the cedars, pelt now, rain now,
     or is that the last time coming wild, stones against
every pane breaking, is it the last, hail now whose
     particles breaking through as little toads, silver
fishes everywhere. Seek shelter—. What more
     do you need from me, it makes the forrest bare: take
the little ones quickly, bow down, great whirlwind
     in grit now, ice, excreate of stone and leaf-shred sound
of howling birds, so I say it is not faithless to lie
     in the doorway going down without faith, dear hurry
keeping open vigil at the site out of stillness out of
     darkness now the sudden breaking down, Dear wind—


Copyright © 2015 by David Baker. Used with permission of the author. “Storm Psalm” originally appeared in The New England Review.