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Sunday, August 26, 2018


by Catherine Chandler

how I would shake
confessing venial sin

in that dark space
behind that sliding door

to Father
Father Son and Holy Ghost—

an apple pilfered
from the cellar bin

a cuss word slip-up
a neglected chore

a schoolyard scuffle or a lie 
a boast—

while he who consecrated
water   wine

who baptized babies
visited the sick

was fucking me           though they
would reassign

him      allegations never seemed
to stick

because whose word was sacred
his or mine

my lexicon too simple             tongue
and dick

the bishop kicked the reverend

before he died            but sent
his thoughts and prayers

Catherine Chandler is the author of four collections of poetry, including Lines of Flight, shortlisted for the Poets' Prize, and The Frangible Hour, winner of the Richard Wilbur Award. Currently living in Saint-Lazare-de-Vaudreuil, Quebec, she was reared in Wilkes-Barre, PA, in the Diocese of Scranton.