Prayer for the Abuser
We recently returned from the Tucson Gem Show
where we find icons and materials for the jewelry
we make to compliment our publishing work.
It is a world bazaar ringing with wondrous languages.
Gemstones and folk art treasurers fill up hundreds of
of motel rooms which during the day are small shops
and at night are campsights for extended families.
There are a half dozen public auditoriums full of exhibitors,
five or six tent encampments the size of big box malls,
all full of exotic stones — as if the earth
had turned inside out, lapis, turqoise, rose quartz,
amethyst caves, pertified wood big enough to sleep on.
In and among these exhibits we find icons from
different cultures, sometimes under a table, or
in a van. Some vendors seeing us coming come out
with what they know we're looking for.
Sometimes they tell us about the figures,
sometimes they don't.
On the first day this year,
I picked up a few dozen pieces of quartz
etched with Quan Yin superimposed on
a prayer. When I asked the vendor
what it said, he recited it —
I'm pretty sure this is what he said.
Kuan Yin Prayer for the Abuser
To those who withhold refuge,
I cradle you in safety at the core of my Being.
To those that cause a child to cry out,
I grant you the freedom to express your own choked agony.
To those that inflict terror,
I remind you that you shine with the purity of a thousand suns.
To those who would confine, suppress, or deny,
I offer the limitless expanse of the sky.
To those who need to cut, slash, or burn,
I remind you of the invincibility of Spring.
To those who cling and grasp,
I promise more abundance than you could ever hold onto.
To those who vent their rage on small children,
I return to you your deepest innocence.
To those who must frighten into submission,
I hold you in the bosom of your original mother.
To those who cause agony to others,
I give the gift of free flowing tears.
To those that deny another's right to be,
I remind you that the angels sang in celebration of you on the day of your
To those who see only division and separateness,
I remind you that a part is born only by bisecting a whole.
For those who have forgotten the tender mercy of a mother's embrace,
I send a gentle breeze to caress your brow.
To those who still feel somehow incomplete,
I offer the perfect sanctity of this very moment.
©Susan Bright, 2007
Susan Bright is the author of nineteen books of poetry. She is the editor of Plain View Press which since 1975 has published one-hundred-and-fifty books. Her work as a poet, publisher, activist and educator has taken her all over the United States and abroad. Her most recent book, The Layers of Our Seeing, is a collection of poetry, photographs and essays about peace done in collaboration with photographer Alan Pogue and Middle Eastern journalist, Muna Hamzeh.
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