Prayer for Marshalltown, Pella, Bondurant, Iowa after the tornadoes

Bless hospital patients evacuated
and those who offer emergency care
in new settings.

Bless those in the shelter in Tama
whose homes were destroyed
and those who begin the work
of clearing, finding pieces of memories,
and making new ones.

Bless the slow rebuilding of house
and courthouse and coliseum
when the spotlight of news
has moved on to other stories.

Bless residents of the veterans’ home
safe but relocated.

Bless those who look up
at the hole in the sky
where the clock tower was
and can see how so many people
make time for one another.

May the re-building with kindness
of all the wind destroyed
bring you as close to one another
as the wall-repairers of old Jerusalem,
as full of hope as we can imagine
pairs of goat kids,
terriers, and probably monkeys, too,
off-loading from the Ark.

(with all my good and sweet memories of childhood visits to Marshalltown)

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