Bitter waters

“How can you sing when My creatures are dying?” God said to the angels*

But I am not an angel, said Miriam

I am waters made bitter by enslavement

By the blood of baby boys

By mothers’ tears

And almost, I confess, by my own

So now,

 If I dance from relief

If I cry tears of release

It is not because I rejoice in their deaths

Or take pleasure in the poetic justice

Of waters made bitter red with their blood, their limbs

I sing and dance because at last my limbs, my blood and my voice

Are finally my own, and they are sweet. -Yael Fischman, 1/28/2024

*paraphrase of commentary on Exodus, ch. 14, v.30, p. 270 Hertz Chumash

To view my other poems and musings, please see and click on Blog, then Muse


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