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The Holy Spirit comes in while you are quiet. There is nothing
voiced yet many questions while our tongues are still. In the years
ahead of us, will we hear laughter on this path? Not whether but where
will we shed tears? How shall we know our vocation in this place? 
We must walk together in silence; one must not speak in the forest.
The sycamores and birches shed green syllables only God deciphers—
And soft flames light our darkening path. And the slope of the hill
is most arduous at the end but those walking around us will help.
And a late, wild wind caresses the pines edging the hill at nightfall— 
and there is a dragonfly hovering like a thin angel, a warrior of air— 
custodian of daybreak when the moon will set again over the water.
What blessing covers our lives? What shall we take back to this world?
And Christ is at the top of the hill, the one who offers body and blood.
The plague of the world is not yet dead, raging against our assurance  
of heaven. Come to the door of this hill and look up— at the foot,
we won’t see all the way to the summit, but the son is there, hanging
on a tree. The lowest star in the sky will soon be the brightest.
And there will be those offering fire to light the way,
their eyes burning with witness.

Photo by Dorothea OLDANI on Unsplash

Karen An-Hwei Lee

Karen An-hwei Lee is the author of Rose is a Verb: Neo-Georgics (Slant 2021), Phyla of Joy (Tupelo 2012), Ardor (Tupelo 2008) and In Medias Res (Sarabande 2004)winner of the Norma Farber First Book Award. She authored two novels, Sonata in K (Ellipsis 2017) and The Maze of Transparencies (Ellipsis 2019). Lee’s translations of Li Qingzhao’s writing, Doubled Radiance: Poetry & Prose of Li Qingzhao, is the first volume in English to collect Li’s work in both genres (Singing Bone 2018).  Her book of literary criticism, Anglophone Literatures in the Asian Diaspora: Literary Transnationalism and Translingual Migrations (Cambria 2013), was selected for the Cambria Sinophone World Series. Currently, she serves as the Provost at Wheaton College.