He has blessed, and I cannot reverse it. – Numbers 23:20
You told me from the age of three,
God has blessed you;
got others to believe.
When you told Aunt Veronica
I could see angels,
she fell to her knees.
You taught me about demons –
how they were destroying my father;
seeking to destroy me.
Later I discovered you
were the one being destroyed by demons
more hellish than anyone knew.
The long nightmare now over, how can I
believe blessings of a madwoman
fighting a nameless evil?
Reminder from God:
Blessing against the odds,
Balaam could not help himself.
God placed the words of fire on his tongue;
did not relieve the burning
till they were issued.
I did not have a hope chest.
The first time a friend spoke of hers,
eyes luminescent with dreams,
I had to ask what it was.
But Mama said
God plans to give me hope and a future.
She built a box with those words,
polishing them with promises
like love of Jesus
and peace that is past comprehension,
sealing the wood with shellac
of never leave you nor forsake you.
On my 24th birthday she completed her work,
and it was good.
I continue to discover its excellence
as I remove item upon item,
year after year,
ever changing to match my need,
never running out –
the Everlasting hope chest
my mother built for me
from eternal words.
Kelly Hanwright is a poet, teacher, and dog trainer living in the beautiful Smoky Mountains. She is a Pushcart nominee whose work has appeared in various venues including The Birmingham Arts Journal, Lady Literary Magazine, and American Diversity Report.