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The wings of your front ribs rise around my hand
laid between their slow ascent and fall.
We tell the story to one another again in darkness
when all our city’s flames are fluttered out
how you only came to watch other men
stand scrutinized before God’s ancient eyes
how from your staff a dove chose you for me
before feathering into my body’s willing nest
your surprise followed by disgrace and the haste
you made from kindness to unbind us quietly
keeping shame from both our faces before angels
woke you with news you would need your courage
your patience your carpenter’s hand smoothing us to a star
shining in the East. Take me as you did then and guide me
in an hour of earth small seed inside your visionary love.

Alexandra Barylski

Alexandra Barylski is the Executive Editor of the Marginalia Review of Books. She received her third degree from Yale (MA in Art & Religion), is an award-winning poet, and writing coach.