April 8: Marge Piercy's "Wellfleet Shabbat"

Ideal for Friday evening and ushering in the Sabbath, this poem is classic Marge Piercy, from a new gathering of her work entitled The Hunger Moon: New and Selected Poems, 1980-2010. (The term “Shekinah” in Jewish theology refers to the visible manifestation or indwelling presence of God.)

Wellfleet Shabbat

The hawk eye of the sun slowly shuts.
The breast of the bay is softly feathered
dove grey. The sky is barred like the sand
when the tide trickles out.

The great doors of Shabbat are swinging
open over the ocean, loosing the moon
floating up slow distorted vast, a copper
balloon just sailing free.

The wind slides over the waves, patting
them with its giant hand, and the sea
stretches its muscles in the deep,
purrs and rolls over.

The sweet beeswax candles flicker
and sigh, standing between the phlox
and the roast chicken. The wine shines
its red lantern of joy.

Here on this piney sandspit, the Shekinah
comes on the short strong wings of the seaside
sparrow raising her song and bringing
down the fresh clean night.

Learn more about The Hunger Moon by Marge Piercy

Visit Marge Piercy’s website.