Was the sky blue. Or light-bleached.
An answer wrapped in the rags of its banner.
Or forever sealed in the sun.
I don’t remember.
Had Silence ever desired a house.
The synagogues were closed.
The churches were closed.
I walked for hours, down
down to that door —
no one called me in.
It was a simple shelter,
an empty oratory
in an empty city.
Outside stayed the battering
of wars and all the gibberish,
inside — an echo
and the arch of the covenant
floating in a golden fresco.
The red enamel squares
forming the archangels’ wings
sparkled as scalpels,
the stones, in the walls,
annuled them by tender ocher.
I fell there, more than I knelt.
Watching the mute
vault. Yet I cannot
tell if it was bluer or redder.
Attention, they say,
taken to its highest degree,
is the same thing as prayer.
Attention is poetry.
But I didn’t come to pray.
And this is not a poem.

Enough of these calls.
Enough of these words.
I could have screamed down
a thousand shrines,
I could have stayed there
forever, howling like a beast,
all I got was silence.
So many sufferings,
secrets, having gone
through so many lungs,
stomachs, mouths.
And all we get is always
Silence.

Only sometimes,
past these walls,
past these stones,
however frail and perishable
— a breathing and a beating
of a heart to disturb it.

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