To you birth I gave; to you a promise I made;
When you fell, I picked you up, held you on my knee;
When you were ill, I cared for you, with you I stayed:
I am here, reaching out to you, stay, stay with me.
Now you have abandoned me, turned to evil ways;
You have ravaged and slaughtered, earned the gallows-tree;
People rage against you, damn you all your days:
I am here, my arms are opened, turn, turn to me.
How can I give you up? How can I hand over you?
My love wells up; louder, louder grows my plea:
My anger will not last; what are we to do?
I am here, let us embrace and hope, hope with me.
Anger, torment, anguish, all these; yet love so near,
I am waiting, ready and opened, I am here.
©1989, John A. Mills
Published in A Sense of Reason; Poetry Today ©2001