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O Mother Mine

for the Children of Allepo (Anti-liturgy)
Volume 30, Issue 10,11 & 12, December 21, 2016

Paulette C. Turcotte

I swear O Mother Mine,
on the taste of the salt air
in which I awaken, on the fire trees
exalting the sky
against the world's lust.
I am alive this morning by these words,
by these eyes, by these hands,
by these times, 
by these rebel forms,
I swear O Mother Mine,
by the unsettled night
by those fire trees, 
by my life,
by my breath, 
by my art,
by my trembling heart,
I swear by the winds and the tides,
by the banished languages of forests, 
I swear by my blood, and my words
     and my own fractured life
O Mother of broken mothers, I swear
by the mysterious voices,
by my ancestor's bones,
by my fierce and dangerous longing,
by the terrible events of these days,
I swear, O Mother Mine that no day 
shall pass that I do not mourn 
your afflicted, your  lost, your children 
     of war.
in my dreams, I steal them back from  
I find the door, I find the key,
O Lady of the Roses, Mother Mine, 
I will be for you, a dark and delicate
an impeccable heart, 
a shelter for the children of war, 
O Mother Mine, O Brave Light,
let me be a house of prayer, 
a sanctuary for their holy bones.
a dream for their tomorrows.