What Choice is There but Gratitude

The darkness rises early
The still silence lingers
Hanging in the air
Half weighted by
The ever-swelling darkness
Half lightened by
the memory of day.

Faith in the sun’s return
does not chasten my discomforts.
Faith in the mysterious
Does not sway the cold.

The night swells in hours,
Day upon day,
Punctuating and piercing,
As too does
It’s still silence.

I sit with my breath
And feel its rise and fall.
I feel the biting cold
Set into my bones.
I feel the heavy dark
Sink and sit with me.

The night is long,
Still, silent,
And deeply dark.

What choice is there
But gratitude?

The stars,
All the more precious,
shine with greater brilliance.
The invaluable moon
Is ever present.
The whole sky knows its light.

The morning star
Fails to rise
With uncountable eons
Of vigil offerings
Of hope, prayers,
And love.

The altar candle
Is lit.
Another precious
Soul has parted.

What choice is there
But gratitude?

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