If they aren’t family, you don’t know
the spit at the corner of the mouth
as they say words they’d tell you not to use
the sound of doors slamming as they leave you
the second trip to rehab (or the fourth).
You just know them showing you
how God, this white rock, goes first
into the plastic cup that is your life so friends,
school, sports, all else (this sand)
can fill the empty space and everything will fit
and how it doesn’t work the other way.
I like them best like this
in jeans, crucifix, collar
at the altar with the children
in a summer camp chapel with no walls
or on the beach, like for my sister’s wedding.
Alleluia we say when Lent is over.
A bright cloth butterfly beneath the Alleluia
on my father’s stole.
Next up Psalm for My Earthly Soul
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