“You Ask Me Why I Did It” by Yakov Azriel

Why did I do it? Because of him. Because
I wanted him. Because my appetite
returned. Because the light he brought was bright
and blinded me. Because I had to cross
a busy street. Because I had to toss
a coin. Because I was afraid of light.
Because the night was dark. Because the night
was long. Because the night was filled with loss.

Why did I do it? Because I had to eat.
Because I needed water I could sip.
Because the light I brought was dim, too dim
to help. Because I couldn’t find a street.
Because I couldn’t find a coin to flip.
Because of him. Because I wanted him.

—–

Yakov Azriel was born in New York and came to live in Israel at the age of 21. He has published five full-length books of poetry in the US, the latest being Closet Sonnets: The Life of G.S. Crown (1950-2021), which was published by Sheep Meadow Press in November 2017.  Over 500 of his poems have been published in journals and magazines in the US, the UK, Israel and online. In addition, his poems have won twenty-four prizes in international poetry competitions.