I don’t want to pray for forgiveness
like I’m pinned by the wings
to God’s corkboard.
But when the iron in my blood
is towed toward the magnet that is
her in her
sunny Sunday best, I don’t stop myself
from choking on the
Lord’s Prayer.
I indulge my shame.
Like a sleepy child
I’ll never want,
it yawns
for frivolous things,
like fragrant rose bouquets,
or monotonous love.
I ignore the tired requests that
I need to answer.
Only I can unearth up my roots, hidden
in the tangled churchyard.
Only I can sever the rubber bands
that I tentatively snap against my heart,
but I have lost both
the shovel and
the patience.
Trying to dig gets me nothing
but dirt under my nails and
empty hands. Stubborn
(or maybe even divine)
say that if there is
anything left
of who I am inside,
it is years
from being covered
by wedding gowns and
tiny, blue swaddling clothes. Still,
what I wouldn’t give for a frivolous thing,
like a sham love,
or a heart
that didn’t want to hide.

James Bowie High School


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