All old maids are mystics,
Knees on hardwood floors;
Dust circling as their bodies descend;
Gumballs on the bottoms of their throats;
Chapped lips opening in hope and recitation
Yit-ga-dal v’yit-ka-dash sh’mei ra-ba
And waiting, parted, for the choral response,
Silence like shallow waves
That crush against their mouths,
Salt water dripping on their tongues.

Illustration by Rose Jaffe

Bodies become brittle and cold,
Thin glass in a tall copper lamp.
They are objects now,
And always were, thinking back to the blacktop,
The rotted peach kickball,
The broken bottle hopscotch,
The forced letters from the front,
And then the casual expectations from the infirm.
So it makes sense now, that all their objects
Have become people now, and all people
Are spiritually significant, always present,
Never gone.

Each book is a Bible,
Each book is a blond, bug-eyed boy,
Each book is silently loved
Just as all things are silently loved.

Things happen in twos.
Resemblances are unmistakable.
Promises made should not be broken.
Resurrection of the dead.
Truth reveals itself only in dreams
And golden songs hummed sweetly
At the breakfast table while clinging
To a faded green mug.
In the corner, where the peeling walls meet:
What is solitaire but at attempt at tarot and truth?
The future is a way to waste the present,
The past was a waste to all present,
All rise and say Amen.

—David Kinzer is an LSA sophomore.

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