Last weekend we went to Sunset Park in Brooklyn, which, it turns out, has a sweeping view of the city. We sat in the evening sun and watched Shakespeare while children spoke a little too loudly in languages I could not understand and it was lovely.
Yesterday, we prayed, which I have not been, lately. I have not been praying, I mean, though I know how necessary it is, if only to quiet the static of my own anxieties, to open up a closed place in me, to guard against succumbing to the repeating clang of the city (literally, they’ve been dismantling a building outside my office with a jackhammer, floor by floor, for weeks now).
“God is the poetry caught in any religion,” writes Les Murray.
“caught, not imprisoned. Caught as in a mirror
that he attracted, being in the world as poetry
is in the poem, a law against its closure.”
I don’t claim to understand prayer any more than I understand poetry or love or God. I might call it an invitation: Visit this place, O Lord.