And it will not grow
any leaner, any fatter, any
kinder, any darker from the tithe
of your particular suffering—
Luisa A. Igloria, Excuse Slip
Bad night, nightmares, the wind sniffing under the eaves indifferent to my disquiet; the cold hand clasped late in the morning in a drafty vestibule, the bread broken, the body given and remembrance made but never, it seems, quite enough. I asked her the word for the problem of evil in the world and she said theodicy and the law student said I thought that just meant the word of God and we sat there uncertain and stilled. The tithe of suffering is paid in silence, which grows without gaining and retreats without lessening, ever, in gravity. Scars show pale against pale skin, the snow is only a shade lighter than the sky today. The afternoon hours stretch pregnant as the abyss, tithe paid but answers as yet unfound, ungiven.