henever the sand blows into our faces
And the breath of terror scorches our cheeks
With the hatred of radicals toward the truth,
We face the enemy without guns, without planes,
And watch them tremble at our implacability,
Watch them shake before soldiers of belief.
We are the conduits of what sustains us.
The faith of our families and of our church
Reaches across many oceans, across the bellows
Of Kirkuk, Karbala, the Syrian deserts,
To touch us with cool assurance of righteousness.
You faithful are the oasis for victory.
Where the graves of our brothers have been dug,
Where innocents have been tortured and killed,
We plant fruit trees to transform the sand.
As politics and fear become entangled, we are clear.
In Tikrit, where vehicles and old hatreds burn,
We speak Christian words for the oppressed to hear.
Andrew Grossman is a writer and poet who lives in Grand Rapids, Michigan.