because while some truths lend themselves to equations, others are best described in verse

God

On a Monday, near-West End

Under brooding thunder on an early May night
lonely men sit outside the B&N
waiting for company, or God, to get right.

Soccer moms pause and pass at the light;
lonely men look up, then look down again,
their eyes breeding thunder on an early May night.

Longing just for a glance, a bite,
salvation from the fate of lonely men,
a little company, or God, to get right,

late benediction, some mother to say it’s alright, 
they roam parking lot neon in search of amen
under promise of thunder on a quiet May night.

Hard bench, hard hands, back hunched, mouth tight:
mothers’ sons lost searching for some little sin,
for company, or God. To get right,

to get home, whole, welcome, contrite,
wanting someone to wonder where you’ve been
when there’s threat of thunder on an early May night;
you’re waiting for company. Or God to get right. 



Driving

under drying skies, north,
passing fields
the summer has been too wet
to turn brown,
i wait for God
to appear, for poems to rise
like mists, for some sort
of ever

that doesn’t sting.
croon to me like a wild road,
sunlight spider-webbing
across a cracked windshield
across strange arms
across a morning we can all afford
to spend and live
and live.


grandfather on God and Richmond, right-justified

 

………. I’m not sure about God.
I’ve seen too much of ugliness for it
to be intentional,
………. too much
of beauty for it     not to be.
……….  ………. Take,

for example,
……………….. the downtown silhouette
from across the Manchester Bridge
on a winter’s early evening, the
moon just shy of full,     blushing
behind lit twelfth-storey windows, the soul-eyes
of a city half-wrapped in rivermist
and dinner plans, grinning teeth
of January jack-o’-lanterns reflecting
over rock and rapid.
……………….. Or
Fourteenth and Main
on a rainy rush hour,     drops
………. spilling river-ward through traffic light
and streetlamp, tires
leaving splashmarks across
the footprint of cavalry and

………………………… slave.

Better yet, walk    with    me
through the whispers
at Belle Island, where the voices of fallen prisoners
haunt the college kids sunning like
………. sea lions out over the self-same
rocks. (Have you seen what they feed them in those cafeterias lately?)

……………….. When autumn comes,
the waters will rise in waves, creeping up
………. on the empty beer cans and cigarette
……………….. packs, washing them down
past Chapel Isle and the ruins of the Confederate boatyard
as the river     runs         home.

………………………….. When
I’m dying,
take me to the old hospital
where McGuire’s successors taught
medicine with stolen bodies;     no
chain-linkedSaint-named designer cure
for this gentlesoul.            Andwhen

I’m dead
take me to
Hollywood
………. and a spot
……………….. where I can see the river
………. from a grave
without a cross:
I’m still
not too sure about God.