Psalm 17
a difficult song about mourning

Lord, how do we mourn
in a free land? How do
we allow atrocity and

still have the freedom
to choose? We do not
cry in empty space: but

our crying would be worse
in a revenge-wrought iron
land, where security

would be the only aim
and no one would have
open air to breathe

or drop tears for the
dead and for the living.
We must choose to

choose. Not to allow
evil or to destroy
democracy. Mourning

and breathing while we
arm, yes, and await
evil’s annihilate implosion.

For now we choose, in
a free place, to bear
the weight of death—in

nations wounded and in
the raw-split parts
of the human heart.