It seems its only job is to thwart me,
that illness that shrivels my strength to a crinkly rose petal
that neighbor whose threats break down doors into may past
where I once huddled shivering
that job that presses like a spring gale
always wanting more.
But when I call on the Beloved
I see. . .
a life of beauty shaped by the pressure
of those very counterweights.
The illness teaches me to be honest.
The neighbor reminds me where love is.
The job transforms all work into service.
Like the weightlifter pressing barbells
droplets of sweat form on the brow
as the muscles strengthen.
So when I want to curse
the pain, frustration, boredom and despair
I turn and instead say