Valley of Dry Bones – redux

A poetic reflection on loss


Littered is the land of every life
with pale, dried bones…

of shattered dreams
scattered on the harsh terra firma
of reality’s unrepentant unyielding landing
of the predestined fall
of once-ascendant, though leaden wishes, and

of olden, long-serving, now uncurtained
(like Andersen’s emperor’s naked finery
or the Ozian sham-wizard unmasked),
uncertain beliefs,
bleached in the light of newfound, bosom-clutched,
though untested, unproven truths, and

of lost loves
(their images, frequent reveries of hungering memory)
some departed, crossing the threshold of death, beyond
to a life and land incorporeal and
others alive (yet, so long out of touch, out of reach?,
as unfleshed)
with whom no words exchange
either in doting recollection’s endearment
or in angered temperament
from that past-time of togetherness
that, sadly,
wrought little shared gain,
but mostly (only remembered?)
mutual pain.

When immersed in these reflections,
I hear the Voice of One who asked the prophet: “Can these bones live?”

My mind stymied,
my tongue stilled,
finally, I remember, rehearse, and repeat as the prophet replied:
“O Lord God, You know.”


Endnote: The Valley of Dry Bones (Ezekiel 37.1-14)

1 thought on “Valley of Dry Bones – redux

  1. Can these bones live!!!??? Thank you Paul and I say YES!!!! While working on my forensic science degree I saw a lot of bones!!! I appreciated what and who they represented. I tried to imagine the lives that the bones belonged too! Then I tried to add one facet to my life that the bones of others represented for me since they could no longer accomplish what they may have left undone in their lives! So I tried to make dry bones into active bones again.

    Dry bones inspire me to keep accomplishing my goals and dreams so when people in the future look at my bones maybe they will say, these dry bones lived a lot of life in their time!!!

    Much love!


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