Poetry by Amber Koneval

The Road to Jericho

I met Bartimaeus
on the side of the road

He was dressed in flannel,
blue, gray and brown crosshatching
enveloping him like a tent.
Might be his only home.
His dull ballcap was pulled low
low, over long greasy hair
low, so low that I couldn’t tell
if he had eyes at all.
Maybe he had pity on me.

Me, who rolled up the windows
so that I couldn’t see,
couldn’t hear him cry

daughter of God
have mercy on me

I drove, as soon as the light turned green
so I’ll never see him spring up
and come forgive me.

I left Bartimaeus
on the side of the road

The Widow’s Mite

the sound of two coins rubbing together
is laughter

a swish-swish-swish-clink
of metal
that shakes deep in the gut
without a smile

the widow’s mite laughs
for all our rat-race rushing
got us no closer to serene shores
our surplus wealth provides no bribes
for pearly gates

a life lived held close
like a security blanket
leaves no room for joy

the widow, she gave all she had
her whole livelihood
and look, now
how she rejoices


Today is the day the Lord has made
burning brightly
like a lantern lit
torch-fed in the apple of each cheek
that dents with laughter

Now is an acceptable time
to throw off the sackcloth
the anxiety
to shuck off the tenseness
like an old skin
and throw your new limbs into the air
dancing with frenzied merriment
to the tambourine of the
happily beating heart
sloshing full with the ambrosia
of mirth
golden and glowing

The kingdom of God is at hand
seeping through the life-lines
a Spirit of gladness
a guiding grace that thrives in
sing-shining down to the bones
fearfully, wonderfully made
and aware

is the day.

Who Are You to Speak of God?

I am woman
I am daughter
I am sister
I am lover.

I am destroyed
I am disabled
I am dependent
I am broken.

I am joyful
I am faithful.

I am filled-of-anger
I am fear-of-water
I am blank-of-face
and red-of-cheek.

I am violated-of-body
I am render-of-Spirit

I am full-of-forgiveness
I am never-forgetting
I am slow-to-trusting
I am long-of-loving

I am sore-of-praying and

I am lament-in-action
I am Creation-crying
I am prayer-answered

I am flesh-of-God’s-heart


Creation sings from the inside
deep down roots balking at
calling out; there’s no such thing
as silence
When in the fullness of joy sings
from the nestled in, tangled up
strung from one end of time to

In me, my womb sings
at the core of my being
rushing like a red-robin beating
against my body as if caged.
Its song flies so strong it wings
out into my waking dreams,
leaking at the edges until
is saturated by its particular tone
and color.

I am the response
to my own calling out
spilling over into Creation
with a peculiar thrill

Copyright 2013 Amber Koneval


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