The God Within


She prays fervently
morning to night
a book in hand
as she incessantly chants
hymns and odes
to her Almighty

The weight of prayer
sits heavily on eyes
Lids droop
as she sways forward
the book sliding out
of slack fingers

She jerks awake
lost moments unnoticed
Lips resume recital
overlooking the pause

Like night follows day
unceasingly
every waking hour
perhaps even when asleep

I long to ask her
why she never stops
God has only ever given her
a life marked by toil
a few oases of meagre joy
in a vast desert of suffering

Give up now, I want to say
If there is a God
he’s not listening
If there was a God
how could he be unmoved
by your unwavering belief
your unswerving faith

You hung your life
on those twin hooks
held on to them
to get you through
the toughest of times

Steadfast in your conviction
you always said,
“Without prayer,
it could have been much worse”

Maybe it’s why I pray too
when I feel I can’t go on anymore
A call to unseen forces for help
A plea for a shoulder to cry on

No divine help arrives
but the very act of asking
seems to lighten the load
and, somehow, I find the courage
to shoulder the burden and carry on

Perhaps God is within me

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