Dear God


by Janice Bevilacqua (12/97)

    Dear God,

    You who covets my breath, who shuffles my life like a black and red deck in your gashed palm, whose blood runs like a creek through your life line, whose hands are as ugly and as scary as mine, tell me the one about the time you made me: how you played Picasso and created me disarranged. How you were like a child planning a fun collage; snipping the lungs, pasting them in, humming your hymn as you worked; and the casting of the ribs: how you designed such a delicate crib to keep unbroken when the coughs come banging like shots.

    God, that things are undying fascinates me. At times I attach myself to their infinity: the bed, the kitchen table, bread and old tea mugs, the cozy middle between my mother and father.

    Where movement isn’t, there seems such an ordered, still life.

    In the mirror, where I do go on, the inaccuracy is traced exactly: a reflection in a spoon, an artificial masterpiece, a beautiful woman in the wrong light. Now let me play child and wonder all night, how come?

    Running my hand a hundred times over the body, my separate piece, I see the disease is multiplied. I see the disease is reflected over and over… Forgive me, Father, But You asphyxiate my creed. You have taught the infection to breed, You have placed that luckless card at the top of the deck.