The body count rises.

Arms raised, voices sobbing, blood pours.

Is there no balm in Gilead?


The wailing magnifies.

There are not enough garments to rend.

The ditches are full, but there are not enough Samaritans.


Grief is a monsoon, a typhoon, a deluge.

There is no memory of an antediluvian time.

The praying tongues are parched; sighs stopped in dried throats.


Hands flop helplessly.

The willfully ignorant caw and cackle, their hearts hardening within them.

How long, O Lord, how long, how long howlong howlong howlonghowlonghowlong?


How can we sing the Lord’s song in a land that refuses to see Christ

In Brown faces, in dark spaces, at 10 paces, in uniformed cases?

Jesus! Jesus.


Swing low, sweet chariot… come and carry us home.

I don’t think that’s a band of angels I see

And there are too many brothers and sisters who just can’t even anymore.


deep exhale



The Reverend Julia Seymour (ELCA) serves Lutheran Church of Hope in Anchorage, Alaska. She blogs at


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2 thoughts on “Friday Prayer: Nothing’s Good

  1. This is such a beautiful lament. I will be working this into our Sunday services. Thank you for allowing the spirit of grief, and anger, of dismay, and helplessness move through you to the world of healing hearts and hands around you.


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