The people stood in a half circle around the crumbled rock, clay, and concrete. From the east end of the island to the west, it was a wasteland. The buildings were collapsed, the trees uprooted, and the water, which in an instant became, was washed out to sea again.
The cries of the infants were deafened by the mourns of their mothers, until finally the mothers could not cry any longer. Men were made boys again, and the boys were asked to be men once and for all.
Flying machines hovered above, with no clear place to land, dropping boxes of food, of water, of life.
A voice at the front of the crowd, opened the cover of his book and read:
“Shout for joy, barren one who has borne no children! Break into cries and shouts of joy, you who were never in labour! For the children of the forsaken one are more in number than the children of the wedded wife, says Yahweh.
Widen the space of your tent, extend the curtains of your home, do not hold back! Lengthen your ropes, make your tent-pegs firm,
for you will burst out to right and to left, your race will dispossess the nations and repopulate deserted towns.
Do not fear, you will not be put to shame again, do not worry, you will not be disgraced again; for you will forget the shame of your youth and no longer remember the dishonour of your widowhood.
For your Creator is your husband, Yahweh Sabaoth is his name, the Holy One of Israel is your redeemer, he is called God of the whole world.
Yes, Yahweh has called you back like a forsaken, grief-stricken wife, like the repudiated wife of his youth, says your God.
I did forsake you for a brief moment, but in great compassion I shall take you back.
In a flood of anger, for a moment I hid my face from you. But in everlasting love I have taken pity on you, says Yahweh, your redeemer.
For me it will be as in the days of Noah when I swore that Noah's waters should never flood the world again. So now I swear never to be angry with you and never to rebuke you again.
For the mountains may go away and the hills may totter, but my faithful love will never leave you, my covenant of peace will never totter, says Yahweh who takes pity on you.”
Behind the man two boys had pushed aside the remnants of the building, and slowly they resurrected the Cross, at the center of the town. And the people cheered. The people danced. The people praised, shouting, “Praise be to God. Praise be to God. Praise and glory to the Highest! Our savior!”
And the claps of thunder, which had come and gone with the wind and rain, shook the ground once more, as the people stomped their feet in celebration. A new day was coming.
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