Three Articles of Faith

      For Charles Wright

                        1.
                  Laundry
I lift and drag two clothes-line posts
nailed like heavy wooden crosses
from the solitary place we hung
our guilty clothes to dry like sins
scented in the blowing sun,
over my shoulder toward the woodpile
to decay and rot: I am a thief
climbed down from resurrecting death,
now returned for the final theft,
dragging crosses across the yard
to free you from eternal labor.
Go. No longer crucify
your dirty laundry on the cross.

                        2.
                  Ragged Faith
The sun, with its shoelaces hanging down,
the sky, with its shirt undone,
ragged clouds ripped by the wind,
and stars like small holes
in a black and seamless fabric,
seem to reveal a brighter flesh—
as we skin our knee,
lose our ball in the dark,
can’t find our way home.

                        3.
                  Streetlights
always haunt me, buried in the trees,
far away, like shimmering ghostlights, calling
disembodied amid the leaves, floating
or arranged on hills like ghost notes,
moving up and down, without sound
except for the hum of halogen or carbon
stars floating on staves strung up on poles,
melodies always above us, moving away from us,
dancing just below the hill of night . . . .

 

Steven B. Katz

About Steven B. Katz

In addition to scholarly books and articles, and a chapbook of poetry “Nana!”, Steven B. Katz has published poems in Pembroke Magazine, South Carolina Review, Southern Poetry Review, College Composition and Communication, Pre/Text, Postmodern Culture, European Judaism (London) Obsidian
III: Black Literature in Review, The Raleigh News and Observer, Free Verse, Continental Drift, Archives of Family (AMA), Voices: Journal of the American Academy of Psychotherapy, Isaac Asimov’s Science Fiction Magazine, Star*Line: Magazine of the Science Fiction Poetry Association, and Jacar Press 
volumes, as well as in Elohi Gadugi. Steve is the R. Roy and Marnie Pearce Professor of Professional Communication, as well as a Fellow of the Rutland Institute for Ethics, at Clemson 
University.
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