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Salvation

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Finally, I gave up on obeisance,
and refused to welcome
either retribution or the tease

of sunny days. As for the can’t-be-
seen, the sum-of-all-details,
the One—oh, when it came

to salvation I was only sure
I needed to be spared
someone else’s version of it.

The small prayers I devised
had in them the hard sounds
of split and frost.

I wanted them to speak
as if it made sense to speak
to what isn’t there

in the beaconless dark.
I wanted them to startle
by how little they asked.

Source: Poetry

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This poem originally appeared in the November 2005 issue of Poetry magazine

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Salvation

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