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Sanctuary

So many doves huddled
in that wall,
pushing themselves in.
Ancient lime stones rubbed smooth, beseeching
hands find their comfort. Handwritten
and folded, what the heart

inscribes, hidden graffiti crying songs of smoke.
Brambles between cracked yellowing
stone, in this heat
like clusters of barbed wire, hanging
the laundry of white lace flowers

torn from a notebook, carries the sweat
of hands
wrinkled upturned,
shy smile of asking, giving
unlocks the burden of not

giving. Carefully taped pages
in piles of wind flipped books, Tehillim, Siddurim,
open sanctuary of ruins, facing the only wall,
Calling
for return.

Sarah Antine teaches at Winston Preparatory School and lives in Manhattan.