–      A Call, a Response? After four folktales

O Sleepers, where do we lie?
when voices split the night yet cannot breathe—
in beds of lily congress to get by?

The Seven Sleepers of Ephesus did hide
in caves when persecution forced a flee
(O Sleepers, where do we lie?)

and waking to a world without bullseye,
were given rest, a break to take a knee
in beds of reborn congress, they could sigh.

Twas Rip van Winkle slew a nagging wife
with drink and lazy times beneath a tree
(O Sleepers, how do we lie?)

and found his independence ratified
once woke and wizened, such to a degree
that beds of reformed congress grew him blithe.

Honi ha-Magel, healer, sage, complied
when local horticulturalists tucked seeds
(O Sleepers, why do we lie?)

not for themselves, but in the soil, and why?
that generations yet to come might see
fresh beds and brighter congress in their skies.

We cannot skip the seas while natures die
on land—like Urashima Taro’s passive lea—

O Sleepers, see the places where we lie!
in beds of lily congress on standby.