Altar

After nearly four months, several revisions and incarnations, this is finally ready to be released. Like most of what I write, this all started with an opening line; in this case “To write on your knees”.

 

ALTAR

I wrote
on your knees
so you would recall my
words

When you held communion
in flop-house confessionals
between the pillars of your legs
        where,
        music is played with your trembling
        insides,
        vibrating like violin
        strings

Chiseled your hips with script
hand holders for devotees
        spinning them like a prayer wheel
        to the metronome of clapping riots,
        tongue howling snake charmers
        in makeshift tent faith revivals

        where adorers come to
        dispose of wedding confetti
        gold rings
        lay white dresses
        at your feet

I’ll be the hanging icon above your altar
blessing your communion with
swaying forgiveness
wound up clock heart
counting time

        as you look down
        holding ropes of guillotine
        pendulums,
        cutting spines,
        whispering, “more”
        through pursed lips
        while you trace verses
        by fingertip

 

The photograph is licensed under “Wikicommons”, Photographer: Russell Lee, 15 September 1946:
Healing “en:laying on of hands” ceremony in the en:Pentecostal Church of God. Lejunior, en:Harlan County, Kentucky. , 09/15/1946 – hotlinking disabled as per Wiki common courtesy.