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A Cricket Has Been Calling

High Holy Days 2023

“A Cricket Has Been Calling,” first published in Common Ground

Poem written by Wendy Drexler, used with permission from the author

As I wash my cereal bowl,
my blue coffee cup,
as I fill the feeder, a cricket
has been calling. I listen
for some inflection, an iamb,
I am, I am, any pattern or meaning,
but there is none, or nearly none—
just the scrape of wings, emphatic,
vaguely duple-time, insistent, tireless.
Or else a pause, and I think, ah then,
something is settled, for once.
But the cricket resumes,
an engine unrequited, an equation
to be solved, growing large
as a sound can grow—and I think
of the woman crying at the bus stop
this morning, and her children,
grieving for their father,
who is never coming back,
and I wish I could find a place
for that cricket to rest,
a place to rest
for everyone who calls and shakes
and has not been consoled.