Construction Literary Magazine

Fall 2019

Real Churches

Real Churches
Photograph via Flickr by Sam Howzit

Dad or dog, the dead hover.
They make you what you are.
Whether God exists or not,
these are your creators: they
build your walls, dig your wells,
shape your fears, set fires.
Cry uncle. Cry Uncle
Clyde, specifically, who put
his hairy hand upon your knee.
He floats before your face today—
a slimy black balloon. Cry Uncle Clyde
was there to shape your darker ways.

Or Dad, who stares at you with poker face
each time you open morning eyes.
The last words you spoke: I wish
you were dead!
And so next dawn
he died, the only blessed time
he did what he was told. He minded
like your best dog in the road,
all eyeballs and entrails you
piled inside the Jim Beam box,
you trailing gore across the road,
leaking from the box’s little slot.
The dead hover—except
in bars, the real churches.