Direct Address

Lift up your hands, your empty hands
and pray for the starving,
the famine-afflicted.

Your heart emptied of prayer, now
pick up the pen in your empty hand
and write a check to address hunger’s pain.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Least of My Brethren

This child, this Yemenite child
more than half-starved,
his body carved of bone
and swollen belly

this Yemenite child has a name––
Mohannad Ali. He lies on a pallet,
a hospital bed, waiting to die
or live. (He’s only five.)

His face bisected by light and shadow,
his dark eyes look out into mine
from the photo I keep on my desk
to remember him.