O Lord, God of my salvation,
when, at night, I cry out in your presence,
let my prayer come before you;
incline your ear to my cry.
For my soul is full of troubles,
and my life draws near to Sheol.
I am counted among those who go down to the Pit;
I am like those who have no help,
like those forsaken among the dead,
like the slain that lie in the grave,
like those whom you remember no more,
for they are cut off from your hand.
You have put me in the depths of the Pit,
in the regions dark and deep.
Your wrath lies heavy upon me,
and you overwhelm me with all your waves.
You have caused my companions to shun me;
you have made me a thing of horror to them.
I am shut in so that I cannot escape;
my eye grows dim through sorrow.
Every day I call on you, O Lord;
I spread out my hands to you.
Do you work wonders for the dead?
Do the shades rise up to praise you?
Is your steadfast love declared in the grave,
or your faithfulness in Abaddon?
Are your wonders known in the darkness,
or your saving help in the land of forgetfulness?
But I, O Lord, cry out to you;
in the morning my prayer comes before you.
O Lord, why do you cast me off?
Why do you hide your face from me?
Wretched and close to death from my youth up,
I suffer your terrors; I am desperate.
Your wrath has swept over me;
your dread assaults destroy me.
They surround me like a flood all day long;
from all sides they close in on me.
You have caused friend and neighbor to shun me;
my companions are in darkness. Psalm 88
Oh Lord, we cried all night
widows and women alone
the ancient songs from our youth
became the endless tears that flowed.
Can your love reach down into the grave?
Can you pull us up from this sorrow?
we and bent and torn apart for love
and we wait in hiding afraid.
Not one of us slept last night
the horror and violence of the day
welling up like angry waves on the ocean
we are drowning deep in sorrow.
There are no angels in this border town
no saviors in this slum of outcasts
there is only a mother who has lost her son
and old women grieving together.
This is no sabbath, this is no rest
but a prison of pain and trembling
we gather fragrant flowers and oils
waiting to anoint the dead.
If I could but take his place
if I could but reverse the evil done
I would bear this sorrow with joy
and shed no tears for his broken body.
I am a woman of deep sorrow
shallow breathing is my only food
Inside is the broken mother's heart
shattering and unwilling to beat.