By Paul Bamberger


five decades she waits
the stirring of a small legend   
a scream the length of a life
gone unheard   
but with his death near    
for fear of having never been
love returns   
she bends to kiss him
one last time
he lifts his head
to kiss her back   


let the madman off the hook
eyes of great distances
he too nursed at mother’s breast
felt the sharp slap of life
paid the high price
are there men better
men more of their times
he is of storm one who dared the abys
wounded unbelievers crying out
liberte liberte liberte
a man thrown to the hysteria of the crowd
who walk unafraid into the shadow of the fatted mob 
who rode the five and dime of a child’s tears
a man who saw the hate
as the sly ones asked for god’s sake why


she becomes old
sitting long hours
at a window
in a room dark
with no center  
reaching out
finds no companion   
and as to why
she sits there
you only say
she is not coming back 


to that which is even the defiant law must bow     
the theologist the physicist the philosopher the poet must walk in the shadow of 
it is that which swings fist in hate gentles hand in love   
and keeps one plus two three
it is the thing because dare not work behind
it was there before it existed
will be there long after it slips way

About the Author:
Paul Bamberger holds an MFA Degree in English/Creative Writing from the University of Massachusetts/Amherst, and is currently teaching at Northern Essex Community College in Lawrence, Massachusetts. He published several books of poetry, “Down by the River” being his most recent book published by Islington-Bryer Press.  His poems have appeared in the New Hampshire Review, The North Essex Review, Stoneboat, Ibettson Street, Chiron and Agenda Magazines.