Rahab

I knew what it was like
to have men in my house.
My body was an entrance
in which many passed through;
all-welcoming for wanderers who were hungry
and tense
and wanted nothing more than to ravish
and devour.

It was alien for me to open my doors
and leave my body closed tightly.
It was alien for me to witness men with a purpose.
So I gave them something to eat,
I folded their clothes as they slept
and I kissed them gently
when they took their leave the next morning.

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Elisha

I ate no breakfast on the day he left.
Spent the day in prayer
meditation;
I spoke to friends and fellow disciples
I busied about the house
—just thinking,
that today would be our last.

He glanced at me several times
by the table
eating his usual:
locust berries and bread, made by me.
As I fidgeted with my fingers,
tracing circles over the grooves of my bones
and counted the stitching of my cloak,
he smirked and made an absent comment about the weather.

Finally we got up to leave
I said no words, trailing behind him
like a forlorn, homeless dog
and thought about
how it would end
what I would say
what he would do
how things were going to turn out afterwards.

His last miracle, the Jordan.
The parting of the waters
mirrored the pair of streams that framed my face—
he pretended not to see.
But he smirked again,
poised his head and sighed
bracingly. Bracingly.

Did he have to go? I asked
In answer, he leaned forward,
pressed his lips against my forehead
and drew back to look at me.
“My friend,” he said,
“I’m moving on. My work is over; yours has begun.”

He was gone
in a tornado of molten spirit
the flames that he had once called to do his bidding
were now taking him home.
There were so many things we didn’t do,
questions I hadn’t asked
unsaid thank-yous,
forgotten laughs
jokes and tears and memories.

He was gone.
And I was left
with the task
of continuing his work.

Elijah

You cut yourself again
and I saw lines of scarlet
digging trenches along your arms
so that they spilled over.
The ground was decorated in your
essence. It rained into the dust
and formed pools at your feet
but you didn’t care
because your eyes were cast upwards
upwards
at a God that wasn’t there.
How did the clouds look to you that day?
And I,
I sat and watched
as the choir chanted to him
but he didn’t come for you
and your altar remained dry.

I sat and watched.
Because Mine was coming.
And I wanted you all to see.