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Born of Water & Spirit

By Ariana D. Den Bleyker

(John 3:1-6)

for Phyllis

& I ached in that moment,

longing for restoration,

my spirit heavy with the weight

of invisible fruit—

the soul of myself ripe.

& I felt the seed of it sending

its roots, silently, through

my stillness.

How to describe that moment

when we become, this awakening?

I calculated the distance between

womb & Heaven, dreaming

a dream for God to show me

what I was & who I’d become,

the breath in my chest carrying promise.

I was awake, silver water spilling,

less than arms-length in the patient

opening of one long-awaited

flower, the quiet mechanics

of one perfectly-crafted key turning

the lock of my body

as I crowned through blood & water,

slowly, slowly—

right shoulder reaching out

until I felt my soft edges sharpen

from the touch of God.

This new life, this plucked silence,

a teardrop—the Spirit sweeping

over the face of the waters,

knitting me together once more,

wind-like, dove-like,

holding me as I became

& Christ awakened in my body

from above through God’s cupped hands.


Ariana D. Den Bleyker is a Pittsburgh native currently residing in New York’s Hudson Valley where she is a wife and mother of two. When she’s not writing, she’s spending time with her family and every once in a while sleeps. She is the author of three collections and twenty chapbooks, among others. She is the founder and publisher of ELJ Editions, Ltd., a 501(c)(3) literary nonprofit. She hopes you'll fall in love with her words.


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