Tuesday, September 20, 2016

If you lived here 
you’d be home now

Jesus wasn't what I expected when he finally came by
in a red corduroy suit 
driving a matching red MG sports car
yelling—Alright, everybody out of the pool!

Being Good Christians, we got out
dried off
asked—What's the matter now, Jesus?

Well, I'm ok, he said, but God is very incensed
watching your rituals down your church aisles
smoky with deferment and depression
He's even got His inhaler out. 

Now, wait a minute! we said—still in our inner tubes. 
Jesus went on:

We're worried about you guys
looking all around for God, or me, so listen—
Drop it. Knock it off, look
where you are! It's beautiful. 
Take off your watch and listen 
to yourself ticking. 

Drop the Bible, drop Heaven,
drop your thing called Facebook, 
drop your parents approval drop 
your teacher's grade, your boss through 
the floor, and the next door neighbors
you think are watching you. 

We see (from On High) that it starts early
worrying about good grades
best team
best school
best town best country
best actor
best-seller list
respect of your peers
respect of your community
biggest funeral, everybody 
laughing, crying, missing you forever. 

You seem to think it's all important
maybe even fun, and maybe it is, I can see that. 
Probably God can't, He's a little stiff sometimes, 
but what if that kind of success doesn't happen?
So go on, I dare you, drop the hilarious joke of success. 
Isn't it really, not much? 

So Jesus, one of us shot back, bouncing
up and down on the high dive board,
what is important? Nature? Love … all that jazz? 

Jesus got back in the MG and turned it on,
radio too. 
It was Charlie Parker. 

Yes, he said, and all this jazz. 
And, the next full moon—full WHITE
making the rest of the sky deep sea blue;
or the next Aurora Borealis you might see; 
or the deep blue sea (and the Devil, we like him too!);
acts of cheerful sweetness out of the blue 
by strangers deep in the countryside—out of gas,
stuck in the snow, or deep in the middle of a city—
stuck in a room; strangers on a plane, talking
through the clouds, through the night
about anything but success; your deep down
creative desiring instinct, and don't question it; 
not to mention the feeling in your bones 
and on your skin, next time you're out of control 
with laughing—notice that, do that, it's all yours.
So, be in the moment, not the monument. 

(Oh that's a good line, Jesus said to himself,
writing it on a pad and throwing it in the glove box.)

It's not that it's important, he finished up,
but that it's free, all over the place;  
not even made in China. 

Get it? laughed Jesus, revving his MG.
I'm funnier than my dad, he said, 
already in third gear, then
already gone. 

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