The Weighing

by Jane Hirshfield


Original Language English

The heart's reasons
seen clearly,
even the hardest
will carry
its whip-marks and sadness
and must be forgiven.

As the drought-starved
eland forgives
the drought-starved lion
who finally takes her,
enters willingly then
the life she cannot refuse,
and is lion, is fed,
and does not remember the other.

So few grains of happiness
measured against all the dark
and still the scales balance.

The world asks of us
only the strength we have and we give it.
Then it asks more, and we give it.

-- from The October Palace: Poems, by Jane Hirshfield

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Women in Praise of the Sacred: 43 Centuries of Spiritual Poetry by Women Given Sugar, Given Salt: Poems The Lives of the Heart: Poems The October Palace: Poems Of Gravity & Angels
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The Weighing