A 2,000-year-old bottle in a museum
contains tears of a grieving mother

2 inches high
made of blown glass

first mentioned in Psalms 56:9
“Put my tears into your flask”

Common practice in Roman days
Nineteenth century versions

had stoppers that allowed
the tears to evaporate

When a vial was dry,
the mourning period was over.

I wonder if anyone thought
of bottling joy?

— Abraham Menashe
© 2017