The words of a secret have rivet eyes
That cannot sleep to forget what they know.
The restrained voice sharpens to an arrow
That will reach its target through any disguise.
Two old people wait in the temple shadows
Where stone and air are hoarsened with prayer
For some door to open in their hunger;
Sometimes children laugh at her twitching nose.
Worn to a thread the old man’s rope of days,
Spent unravelling in this empty torment,
Has wizened his silence to words of flint.
When he glimpses the child, his lost voice flares.
His words lodge in the young mother’s thought
That a sword of sorrow will pierce her heart.