PAD 21 and 22

For yesterday’s haiku, I eventually came up with:

Tufts of beige hair
drift by warm eggs,
bird scolding dog.

Today’s prompt was to write something work-related. I am in fact still at the office, having begun this after I clocked out at 8:27 p.m.:


I forget if it was a priest or a parishioner
who years ago declared, “God collars those
who He doesn’t want loose on the streets”
as we stood in the Christ Church lobby
discussing div school dropouts.

I am not among them, for all these years
I have known I am not a minister. My gifts
correspond to spreadsheets, manuals,
and casting commas upon wordy waters.
Nor can I ignore how my IQ drops fifty points
whenever I’m face to face with a phone —
instant disqualification for a pastor. It’s not

a source of grief or dismay, though now and then
I covet the parking spaces, the gowns and stoles,
the being needed, and the being deserving
of being so needed, just as I sometimes dream
of gold statuettes and thanking the Academy
even though I don’t write screenplays
and the last time I pretended to be someone else
was in an Ionesco play my last year of college.
I do pretend to be more patient and kind
and content than I actually am, to honor
how fortunate I’ve been: I can’t help my hangups
but ingratitude is not only a sin, it’s a bore
and if I am indeed a creature in His image —
well, I refuse to believe in a God who pouts
or whinges about the messes one could claim
are of His making, nor do I despise
those who cannot bear to believe
in any god, given the cruelties
exercised in His name. Yet, even so,
all that I fold and file in the name of order,
all that I devise for comfort, all that I do
to harvest praise or love — “work”
is what I call my obligations to the possible,
and what is “the possible” but another name for God?

– pld

(As it happens, I do have a sermon to deliver this Sunday, so that’s what I plan to work on when I get home. And the late shift here is admittedly partly due to me taking an extra-long lunch, the better to murder a major (and majorly stubborn) darling in the short story that’s been hijacking my head.)

One thought on “PAD 21 and 22

  1. Those last 5 lines are wonderful, the repetition (both of sound and word) and the motion into the closing question. !!

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