Thou
By Alexander Eikenberg

my father carries in his heart a private place for god
and i imagine when they speak
her voice is like the voice of his mother.
neither have i heard.


once, both staring at the dark ceiling of my parents’ room
where i had run from bad dreams,
he and i talked of god.
i recalled the booming Thous of commandments
and a terrible voice etched to the hearts of prophets. i listened
to the quiet chides and affection in my father’s baritone.
he told me once the formal way to speak had been you
and the gentle, tender intimate was thou.
Thou Art, Thou Shalt, Thou Wilt.


i wonder if in that private place, maybe lit by the passing ghosts
of car headlights through the half-curtained window,
my father hears tenderness in the whispered voice of god,
Thou Art Good, Thou Art Loved, Thou Art A Part Of Me,
as god speaks to her sons like children.