The Stolen Name

Long ages past, we dared not voice Love’s name,

But kept with care commandments we were given,

Lest we should take in vain the things of heaven,

Outliving time and sand until He came.

 

And one day He, upon a stone of white,

Shall give a proper name to every soul,

The sum of all we are, our special plight,

When we at last have reached our final goal.

 

In secret, thus, do human hearts bestow

Sweet sobriquets upon their one true love,

Yet, even these are given from above,

A treasure in one’s deepest depths to stow.

 

Today, in some far off, accursèd land,

An unsuspecting babe of dubious make

Now bears a name that was not hers to take,

But stolen by a cruel and vengeful hand,

 

The poor, sad named to market and to sell

To traffickers in children’s innocence!

What godless thief so glacial an offence

Would dare commit, if not a fiend from hell?

 

But who shall bear what only one has born,

What only one kept hidden in her heart?

Shall swindlers drag it through the crowded mart

To auction off like some old sack of corn?

 

Fair Queen, whose radiance these infernal shades

Have put to flight and banished from the realm,

Their claim upon thy jewel doth underwhelm,

And all their tarnished fame dims out and fades;

 

For, we thy subjects shall forever keep,

Unspoken, cherished, in some hallow’d place,

This name that history shall not erase,

Long after generations take their sleep.

 

This name that never on our lips shall sound,

Nor ever vibrate in our common voice,

In never speaking it shall we rejoice,

The quiet reverence of love unbound!

© Joseph Charles MacKenzie. All rights reserved.