We tried in so many ways
to communicate our love.
If communication is not
what you say but
what people hear,
then what we said
was warped and wrenched
into distancing prescriptions
that had no heart.

You asked for food.
We sent manna.
You asked for drink.
Water flowed from the rock.
You asked for directions.
Moses brought the law.
And on and on.
Still you grew
more distant,
more deaf,
more blind.
Memories dulled.
Speech slurred.
Dreams dissolved
into wander dust.

And so we did
what families do
when confronted
with calamity.
We drew straws.
Shorty lost.
He came to share
your plight,
your fight,
your night,
and point you
toward tomorrow.

— Rev. Michael Moynahan, S.J.