24-hour prayer cycle (Penny O'Hara)

Verity La Heightened Talk

FullSizeRenderFor the commuters facing long delays
and for the woman raped,
allegedly, whose breasts were checked for DNA
and for the one year old whose brain was rattled
like a marble in a jar
and for the grandmother who shook her
and for the child whose teacher took him on his lap
And for the cricket star who missed the catch
the tennis pro who lost his cool
the pensioners who lost it all
and for the boy who lost his sister’s hand
and ran from fire and blood
And for the turned-off television
turned-down radio
and for the turned away, the ordered back
And for the footy wing who’s done his back
and for the murdered hostages
and for the kidnapped schoolgirls and the protesters
whose chants were drowned by rain
and for the traffic slowed by broken lights again
and for the people on that plane
And for the refugees
and for the car-plant men who lost their jobs
the bureaucrat who botched an answer
the comedian with cancer
and the shareholders whose stocks went down today.
For all of these, then, let us pray.
Amen. Amen.
Begin again.
Penny O’Hara is poet and short-story writer based in Canberra. Her work has been published in journals and anthologies including Meanjin, Australian Poetry Journal, Award-winning Australian Writing and Best Australian Stories.