this was written for Rabbi David Zaslow on his request for poetry dealing with light and darkness. Thank you, Rabbi David –
By Rivkah Raven Wood
today i hold the sun
on one shoulder,
my arm curled around it
painfully; it burns, but i blaze joyous – I can.
a woman walking to the river
with a bright jug- lush colors painted
to hide the cracks, the scars, sunlight gilding the mended places;
ancient traumas survived, traced and mapped in molten fire.
I breathe and lift my head to the light- this is the heaviest task.
Always the desire in art is that it seem easy,
I am Achilles of Troy
defiant against that early darkness that comes with my choice.
Tomorrow, perhaps, I’ll lay down the sun;
its glory trumpeting scarlet, oranges, shading the mountains in luminous gold
may I shine my life so unabashed; may my releasing burn so brightly
as I sink beyond the horizon –
letting go never came quietly to me.