Bible Review 14:6, December 1998


Elijah and the crow

By Anna Kamieńska

Bible Review

The Weariness of the Prophet Elijah

You understand such immense weariness
when one only whispers
release your servant now
deliver me from the scraps of hunger and thirst called life

I don’t need more than
the shade of a broom-tree to rest my head
a shawl of darkness for eyes
call back the angel
who hastens with bread and a jar of water
send me a long purifying
issueless sleep
lift my loneliness above its cumber
above every bereavement

You know the weariness of your prophets
You wake them with a jolt of new hurt
to place a new desert beneath their feet
to give them a new mouth a new voice and a new name.

Translated by Grayna Drabik and David Curzon

The prophet Elijah reaches out to catch a piece of bread proffered by a black bird, in this painting of “Elijah and the Crow,” by the Japanese artist Tadao Tanaka.

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