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The LORD Has Established Them

How alone sits

the city that never sleeps!

Made like a widow--

mistress of the nations;

Princess of provinces--

made to pay tribute.

To wee hours, wailing,

snuffled tears, rubbered cheeks.

To comfort her, there is none— no,

not none of her darlings— All 

her lovers returning— turned 


Judah packed off– worked with welts,

so soon sated of subservience– 

sent to squat among the peoples– 

scraping up no rest. Fists of old friends

outpace her limp, seize 

the wheezing opportunity.

Zion’s roads mourn-- because there

are none--- coming to celebrate

all her gates-- undone

her priests-- wailing

her maidens-- wretched,

she herself-- wrung out like a ready again reek-rag.

She, prostrated, as the general stands--

She, rolled, as the liaisons loot–

Over her, established, the LORD 

has them– for her sprawling crimes;

She whimpers tiny fingers— the toddlers 

led off, slaves and foremen’s faces.

From Zion’s daughter has marched

all her elegance. Her princes-- 

heavy horned rams finding no fodder 

nor moss or stubble– slipped away

like their strength and their bravado 

before the gleam and flush of the pursuer’s jangle.

Lamentations 1:1-6 vlg/bti


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