Midnight in Texas – November 2021

the midnight brigade of the sweet
and of the sour
churchgoers and unionized protesters
rope-skippers lay in between them on the leaf-covered grass,
projecting their faith to passersby
the faithful give me directions on how to think
I chose to reject their temptations,
reassuring myself I am a man of principle, of honor
in reality I was a vacuous bilgerat
not brave enough to take on these streetsmart screwballs
they were ready to pounce on me
waiting for me to look them in the eyes
tasting the opportunity to point out my flaws
why bother?
walk downtown or into a psychiatric ward
and you’ll hear the language of Christ
not to say religiosity is for the insane
I guess I just don’t get it
why are they the only ones
with the solutions to our problems?
why trust the church over your neighbour
or a friend
or even a stranger
why does He make me to suffer?
why does He want me to fear everything?
fear of death, fear of hell, fear of retribution
fear shouldn’t be the deciding factor of choices in the living world
what if this world turns to hell?
who would be our saviour then?
I had no recollection of the previous night
I wipe my face
and discover soot on my hand
I must’ve woken up not far from here
probably a voice telling me to explore this part of the city
I guess I just want to see with eyes wide open
unobfusticated by the fear
I feel a hot wire in my head
burning through my brain
my only friends are the copperhead snakes in my backyard
the only creatures who know they can kill me
but never will
I’ll tell you you what
after what I’ve seen today
I got to say
there is a new God in town
his name is Despair

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