The question

Cliché and worn

Like an out-of-style

What Would Jesus Do? bracelet

Dropped like a hat


In this equally-worn

Small southern town

Are you saved?


I got saved on…

The date so easily recalled

Like the day you earned

Your drivers license


Like other rites of passage

That is what you do

When you grow up

Down here

Unlike what is brought by

The fire and brimstone

Ultimatum as written

On the inside cover of

A pocket-size Gideons’ Bible

Handed to you

On the way to recess

By suited men

Just beyond

Your public school door

I breath peace

Born by hope

A notion that

Like a loving parent

His grace is infinite

Even with the pain that I’ve caused

Lying out in full view

Before Him

He holds me close

Whispering good news

That these tears

Are not cried in vain


The place where I stand has left me no room

To lie down in peace and understanding

The desperate lurch that I undertook

Toward the opened window

For air to breathe

Left me clinging to this cold precipice

Upon an unforgiving narrow ledge


On the ground far below me I can see

Lingering traces of his legacy

And what little sense of balance I had

On a gurney being rolled out the door

To be placed in a hearse and driven away

By silver-tongued thieves dressed as morticians

With pre-printed sympathy cards in hand


Were I to inch back toward the window

I’d know not how to maneuver in through

To a peaceful place that exists no more

So I will be perched here weathering winds

That come and leave without substance to spare

All the time praying that these ghosts of mine

Will not steal from those that I love down there