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Plague Prayers

O coniferous center

We plead, we whisper into your ever-pardoning ear


Here, a hymn radiating

from a diaphragm of solid gold


Here, a goat sacrificed in your name

Fists, fits, shame.


Here, I bow, I weep,

I sweep this most exquisite temple


Lord, forgive us 

For carrying the cots of unbelievers

for thinking the godless

deserve healing 


For sharing 

our salt and bread

Posted 06/17/20
The Bubonic plague of the fourteenth century is identified by historians as one of the reasons that led to the rise of intolerance and the persecution of the Jewish, Muslim and non-catholic populations across Iberia, adding to the conditions that bought about the eventual collapse of the great conivivencia or peaceable coexistence of the Abrahamic people in Spain under Muslim rule from 711 to 1492. The plague, known as the Black Death was considered by clerics as a divine punishment for accepting nonbelievers.
This poem appears in BAKER OF TARIFA, published by Poetic Matrix Press, 2011.
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