The nurse came in, thinking
I was asleep, and started to pray.
I wanted to throttle her words,
rob them of their power, but it was late
and I was weak from opening and closing
on a steel slab all day.
When I heard that blessing again--
its cadence a flatline static, its breath
the false thunder of rattled tin--
someone was reading it aloud like a poem.
Faith sometimes comes across that way--
sliding in beside you with a blue mask on
wild with sound and sense, and you have to
let it have its say.
painting by Janet Snell, poem by Cheryl Snell