9 months ago


Visitation The Mother,

Visitation The Mother, Anne: You have to leave before the neighbors start to talk before the synagogue becomes a place of condemnation. We have to hope whoever brought you low will dream of when and how to claim you as his own. Some pilgrims leave from here tomorrow. They’ll journey south, across Judea’s hills, so you’ll be safe enough. Don’t cry . . . Your cousin’s house is there somewhere and I’m sure well, almost certain that she’ll take you in. There’s no need to tell her yet . . . You hardly show at all.

The Daughter, Mary: I wish that women were allowed to ride astride a donkey’s back; sitting sideways makes my stomach heave. Perhaps I’ll walk partway today, but all the stones will slow me down and then the men will grow impatient. No one ever told me why we cannot speak to men. I want to ask for rest and shade – the sun has set my veil aflame and yet last night was cold, the ground unyielding. Is that the house? It has to be her house What will I say? What excuse will I use for coming unannounced? I’m so afraid. There’s a woman coming from the well, but she’s too old to be the one my mother talked about and yet . . .