Asperges Me

By Timothy Murphy b. 1951 Timothy Murphy
Cleanse me of my iniquity
and wash away my sins.
Laugh, Lord, at my obliquity.
In you laughter begins.

Regard this little steeple.
You gave to the High Plains
a flock of sheep, the people
who drink deep when it rains.

I shall number all the stones
Assyria has laid low.
I shall number all my bones
as David did long ago.

Oh, what a troubled route man took,
descending from the trees:
cave paintings and the printed book
made on his bended knees.

Lord, the broken spirit,
the sorrows in my heart
are much, much to inherit
and hard, hard to impart.

Source: Poetry (January 2010).

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This poem originally appeared in the January 2010 issue of Poetry magazine

January 2010

Biography

Timothy Murphy still hunts in the Dakotas. His most recent book is the Longman Cultural Edition of Beowulf (2004).

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SUBJECT Religion, God & the Divine

Poetic Terms Rhymed Stanza

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