Shepherd’s Call

Each year, The Catholic Church celebrates Christ the Good Shepherd. A common Gospel reading for that Sunday Liturgy is the Gospel of John, in which Jesus Christ calls himself “the good Shepherd.” (John 10: 14) and says that his sheep “hear my voice.” (John 10:27)

What do I hear?

The tweets, cackles, cries, and crescendos of the backyard songbirds. The distant drone of traffic on the thruway. The last drops of coffee pouring from the coffee-maker.

Mom, screaming my name in the middle of the night, as Dad shouts and curses her—years ago.

At work, a team-teacher’s insults. Another team-teacher’s shouting. A student’s snide mockery. A principal’s cold, analytical dissection of a lesson she found wanting.

Where is the voice of the Shepherd?

In the small, still voice that whispers within each tweet, scream, curse, insult, shout, mockery, and dissection. A whisper I’ll hear only when I let it all go.

breaking dawn
an empty pill container
on the table

photo by Virginie Laune

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Frank J. Tassone

I fell in love with writing ever since I wrote my first short story at the age of 12 and my first poem in high school. My free-verse has appeared in the literary e-zine Pif. My haibun has been published in Cattails, Haibun Today, Contemporary Haibun Online (CHO) and Contemporary Haibun, CHO's annual print anthology. My haiku has been published by the Haiku Foundation. My senryu has been published in Failed Haiku. I regularly perform haibun and other haikai with Rockland Poets. I am honored to be a part of the Image Curve community as a contributing poet. Visit my website www.frankjtassone.wordpress.com to see more of my poetry. Follow me on twitter @fjtassone2 and like my Facebook page American Haijin for updates on my latest work.

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