You and I

By Stanley Moss b. 1925 Stanley Moss
You are Jehovah, and I am a wanderer.   
Who should have mercy on a wanderer   
if not Jehovah? You create and I decay.   
Who should have mercy on the decayed   
if not the creator? You are the Judge
and I the guilty Who should have mercy   
on the guilty if not the Judge? You are All   
and I am a particle. Who should have mercy   
on a particle if not the All?
You are the Living One and I am dead.   
Who should have mercy on the dead if not
the Living One? You are the Painter and Potter   
and I am clay. Who should have mercy on clay   
if not the Painter and Potter? You are the Fire   
and I am straw Who should have mercy on straw   
if not the Fire? You are the Listener   
and I am the reader. Who should have mercy   
on the reader if not the Listener? You   
are the Beginning and I am what follows.   
Who should have mercy on what follows   
if not the Beginning? You are the End and I am   
what follows. Who should have mercy   
on what follows if not the End?

NOTES: (after an anonymous 13th-century Hebrew poem)

Stanley Moss, “You and I” from A History of Color: New and Collected Poems. Reprinted with the permission of Seven Stories Press, www.sevenstories.com.

Source: A History of Color: New and Collected Poems (Seven Stories Press, 2003)

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Poet Stanley Moss b. 1925

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

Subjects Judaism, Religion, God & the Divine

 Stanley  Moss

Biography

Stanley Moss was educated at Trinity College (Connecticut) and Yale University and makes his living as a private art dealer, specializing in Spanish and Italian Old Masters. As a child he visited Europe with his family, and after serving in World War II he taught English in Barcelona and Rome, where he became familiar with the religious and mythical figures that appear in his work.

He is the critically acclaimed author of The . . .

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Poem Categorization

SUBJECT Judaism, Religion, God & the Divine

POET’S REGION U.S., Mid-Atlantic

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Originally appeared in Poetry magazine.

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