Psalm


like a skin on milk
I write to you
I hurl the letters of your name
onto every page, one and many
I know you are reading over my shoulder
look each of us possesses a book of life
each attempts to read what the other has scripted
in these almost illegible letters tipped by crowns
what is the story
we want to know
*
would you turn off that faucet, I shout to my husband
but to you I say: never turn it off

From “The Book of Life: Selected Jewish Poems 1973-2011”  (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012). Reprinted by permission of the author.

Alicia Ostriker has published 14 volumes of poetry, most recently “The Book of Life: Selected Jewish Poems 1979-2011” (University of Pittsburgh Press, 2012). Ostriker received the National Jewish Book Award for Poetry in 2010 and has appeared in numerous Jewish literary journals and anthologies.