Mar 26, 2016

It's Hard to Say No When Jesus Wants to Hang Out

"Do not be afraid," Jesus says as he plops himself
down on the couch, an exhausted sigh floating up
toward heaven but catching itself on the stucco ceiling,
"for I bring you multiple bags of Bugles."
He tosses them, one two three four -
probably two bags more than necessary
but who am I to tell Jesus how many
bags of Bugles are too many -
onto the coffee table.
He reaches for the remote, pushes a few buttons
ineffectively, realizes his mistake and picks up
the PS4 controller, muttering his annoyance.
"I'm going to put on an episode of Jessica Jones,
OK?" he asks then starts the episode
without waiting for my response.
It's fine, of course.

"It's Easter tomorrow," I say
making small talk
making any talk I can
but Jesus just grunts, rolls his eyes
like he's heard it all before.
"I don't believe in you," I say
and I regret it or maybe I don't but it's too late.
I want to leap forward and catch my words but they're gone.
"I don't need you here," I say
"I don't want you here," I say
and things are getting real
because Jesus pauses Jessica Jones
and I shout - when did I start shouting -
"why did you buy so many bags of Bugles?"

He touches my shoulder and I'm suddenly
aware of how much sadness he contains,
how his ocean so completely engulfs my thimble
and I want to apologize but I can't
because Jesus is talking.
"Sometimes shitty things happen
and the only thing I can do
is show that I know you like Bugles.
You don't need to understand.
You don't want to understand.
That's why I'm here."

And Jesus is crying now
so ugly and so beautiful
and I kind of want to lick his face
because what do his tears taste like?
But that's creepy, that's super weird
so I smile and nod and unpause Jessica Jones
and open a bag of Bugles.

Mar 20, 2016


The necessary training of our lives comes not from the teachers
of our youth nor the extended speech of our fathers,
noble in their causes yet ultimately forgotten.
No! It comes oft too late or too slowly
from the simple passage of time, that fickle friend.
And so I find myself these few days as a man torn
between heaven and hell, limbs attached to a collection
of carriages, growing unintentionally taller each hour.
I cannot deny that I am filled with a great melancholy
that finds root in the inevitable losses humans bear,
but never comprehend 'til faced with a mirror'd countenance
so unlike our own that sadness's nature is revealed.
And yet, am I not blessed with the love of angels
in form not unlike my own?
Do I not yet have my own health and fortune
and the promise of the sun yet returning?
For a man may wish his time astride this earth be easy,
banishing every frowning rain cloud that dares appear.
Is not such a life fraught with the peril of the first snowfall?
Would not one stray flake undo such a man?
'Tis better then to face our troubles and answer
blow for blow when the winds of strife do come our way.