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A CLEAR SHELL
Then fire burned my body to a clear shell.
Thought whether the fanning tempest blew from hell
Or heaven I could not, cannnot, tell -
Who have no sense
Left for so nice a difference.
But I learned the essential function of extreme pain -
Of liquid fire pouring again and again and again
And again through the horrified body: such pain
Makes wholly innocent.
Therefore am I impenitet
Today. Today ask no forgiveness,
Having nothing to be forgiven. And my soul, no less
House-proud than at the beginning, shows Death
Smilingly over the place,
Trusting this new face.
© 2000 Elena and Yacov Feldman