Anthony Opal

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SONNET

Groping for God, indistinguishable
from a prayer garden full of dynamite
flowers and the softest bedlamites.
Her favorite foods are perishable.
I put my desire out by proxy
of those neon colored sunglasses
against which a bird’s flitting eyelashes
brush over the tits of orthodoxy.

Stationary is her name for paper.
The last station of the cross gets lost
among the cold grass covered in frost.
The garden’s an exploding leper. Stripper’s
name: Resurrection. I’ve seen stranger
things. There’s a bastard in the manger.

*

SONNET

Safe in the curved cleft of sleep, I watch God’s
back as it moves past me. The gremlin
at my center, drifting home in a snow globe.
Here’s a picture of a monkey in a
leather winter coat with some fur lining.
What happens if I have compassion on
who we’re fighting? Or God has compassion
on Satan? The last station of the cross

might look something like this. Tits up in
a ditch. I snitch on myself in confession,
mention something about needing some traction
if I’m ever going to see things clearly.
“I don’t think so,” the striped jacksnipe replies,
“the best people have the brokenest minds.”

*

SONNET

The trees are made of wood. Strange to see this
as a falcon wearing a hood, seeing nothing
but darkness through its eye-cups. God erupts
from a plastic bill on the windowsill
stripped of paint. The trees go irate in the wind.
A zebra’s stripes are not the sin that some
would have us think they are. Stigmata leaves
no scars. This is the problem if we’re speaking

of a tree’s economy: years equal rings.
The doorbell rings through a birch (ding, dong, ding)
as I do research on a disease that spreads
from jacksnipe to human to lake effect
and then back again. Mandalas in the sand
made by leaves once they’ve abandoned their trees.

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