When I think of the world and all of us in it
I see a young father lifting an infant
out of her stroller as people go hurrying by
and the flash of what shines from his face
stops me on the street and freezes my feet,
my heart pounding, wondering how
everyone can still be walking past him
blind to the column of light he's become
like the morning sun blasting its love
over the horizon ending a long bitter night.

And I feel myself, pure as that moment is,
checking by reflex for imperfections, deceptions,
obliged to remember all the human behavior
that flies out with its claws from the Pandora's box
I have seen the insides of in my own heart.
But I have learned at long last to see what I see,
to not blinder myself with shadows of the past,
let this moment change the world for me,
and I stand, stopped, stunned, crying
like a crazy woman, holding back a hallelujah.

It doesn't happen when it's a mother because
we expect that, of course. It is only men
who have held a knife against my throat and
shattered me with the earthquake of their laughter;
so it is up to me to let my memory evaporate
like darkness in the face of dawn,
it is the faithless night in my own soul
this sidewalk sunrise tenderness dispels,
a miracle, chastising and reminding me
that God is here when I can stand to see it.