Rain. An elastic halo of broken serenity
hung over their helmets. Lightning
and thunder symphonies roared. Little
jewel notes collapsed from the gray canopy
and shattered across their exposed skin
like glass. They stood still and poised
in the rising tempest and, turning
their faces to the sky, they squinted
through the rain at the underbelly of God.
The children bound uniform and ammunition
They were waiting for the music
underneath the storm.
Of the Holy
These are private modern spiritualties.
These are glimpses of our futures.
We sit by swampy lakes and toss offerings
of stale bread and bring shamans ashore
by their prophesizing mouths. We slaughter
our priests and tear their spines from their flesh;
crucifying them in frying pans and smoke houses.
We articulate reverence by tasting urn ash and,
if we’re lucky, we break out in speaking of tongues.
We find peace in watching the hum and glow
of aquariums stocked with glistening goldfish
writing psalms in bubbles and water dance.
We’ve confined our ancestors to fishbowls.
It is proof of our implicit trust in our elders;
it is how we remember the songs and folklore
that brought our rapid beating hearts ashore.
Rachel Peevler is a cashier and Coloradan who’s studied both visual and literary arts. Her work has previously appeared in The Circle Review, Creative Communications, and Gutter Eloquence.