“The Well of Abraham” by Jack D. Harvey

The lamps in the bedroom,
in the midday sun
are far far away,
dreaming of the dark;
the sunlit gold leaf dancing
on the ceiling,
the sunlit motes
flitting in the corners,
filling the room with light,
mark the day.

The sun outside
beams like a cyclopean baby;
from far away in the universe,
its blinding flaming eye
outside our windows
peers in;
through half-parted curtains
the winnowing air of June
wanders in.

The afternoon repents,
forbears its heat
and the air cools our fevered brows;
our tired faces become tranquil;
we sleep and the day passes.

Later, wakening, quickening,
we eye the long shadows
under the windowsills;
in front of the dim walls,
the unlit lamps stand out
like small obelisks,
wakeful sentinels.

Long ago,
the well of Abraham
on the same afternoons,
knew the passage
of heat and light,
knew over the eyelids
of the patriarchs
the passing of ages and
the dust raised by
the water-bearing daughters’
rapid pace, the pitchers’
spilled water splashing
on the dry ground.

Takers of water,
water-bearers,
more serene than the sun,
you are our living lamps at midday;
dream only of the darkness,
but draw of the light.

 

 

 

Jack D. Harvey’s poetry has appeared in Scrivener, The Comstock Review, Sparks of Calliope, Bay Area Poets’ Coalition, The Antioch Review, The Piedmont Poetry Journal, and a number of other on-line and in print poetry magazines. The author has been a Pushcart nominee and over the years has been published in a few anthologies.

The author has been writing poetry since he was sixteen and lives in a small town near Albany, New York. He is retired from doing whatever he was doing before he retired.