when I write, I cast a line for God.

God would not give me all of this hope to choke on.
my death anxiety has stilled because every time death is mentioned I do not believe it’s real.
death will not come for me.
not in the way it comes for everyone else.
God will reveal the truth to me and finally, finally, I will understand how my joints fit into one another and how it is not cruel for God to flush the population of the planet down His toilet bowl.
there is nothing here that will tell me the truth.
God, God, God, one day God will stop the overflow of deceit by omission.
tell me. tell me, God!
tell me.
tell me why you boil me until my flesh is tender but do not consume me.
tell me why you pump fog into my skull until I am too tired to move.
tell me why you demand I follow you when you are nowhere in sight.
damn it. damn it. damn it.
how do I know the difference between my fear and your concern?
take it away. take it away. please, God.
take my fear away before I die.

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Headfirst

I was a man in the beginning.
That’s how God should have made me.
I seduced another man, a man who saw my crimes and forgave them.
But when I met the other man,
The one with a shaved head,
I was a woman again.
And his crimes were worse than mine.
He fed me the meat of a human,
Cooked well and cut into cubes
With the consistency of pork.
I felt God run his gentle hands along
The top of my shoulders, and reach
Into my chest to squeeze my heart.
“You are damned. You always know
When you sin, and you do it anyway.”
Strange how conviction feels so cold,
Like He has finally abandoned you.
I was submissive to the man. I loved him.
Out of the mouth of my mind, a voice
Says everybody has unspeakable desires.
If one is a cannibal, isn’t he at least
Somewhat deserving of respect for his bravery?
He commits atrocities in the name of artistry.
That is worthy of admiration.
He faces damnation with no fear at all.
He turned on me, stole away my life,
And told me that if I left he would kill me.
I thought I could escape, but everything began
To drain away so quickly and I thought
That I loved him until he asked for my freedom of thought.
This is the hidden thought.
The goodness in anyone is worthless
Without corruption.

There is nothing to do but wait.

I think of my grandparents as still alive. How could I think of them as anything else? How could they not be somewhere parallel to me? Where are they, that could be unreachable? Is this God’s plan for us? Live side by side until one timeline breaks and falls away to he-knows-where-but-I-do-not? Is Papa safe? Is Grandpa George safe? Does suicide take you to the seventh layer of hell? Does hell exist? I think there’s something very wrong about all of this. There is nobody to ask. There is nobody who has gone and come back. The only ones to ask are the unbroken. The dead know now what my body squirms daily to discover. I could have asked them in life but they did not know, not then. Only now. This is unfixable. Unknowable. Putrid, obscene ignorance that sticks in my flesh like shame. It feels like a sin, gathers together suddenly in waves of pure, destitute panic. It’s strange, the way the vulnerability in desperation can sometimes feel akin to an orgasm. My mind lurches to fill its empty spaces and finds no information with which to do so. Nature is infallible because she doesn’t pretend to be kind. God, however. God allows my suffering and still proclaims he is kind.

“So the last will be first, and the first will be last.”

I thought you knew that God couldn’t be pinned down. You’ve said so many times that his nature is incomprehensible. Why do you tell me we can’t know the concrete truth, but then, with the same tongue and absolute certainty, tell me I’m wrong? There is no absolute truth. I know you think that’s a logical fallacy. But you ignore every logical fallacy I bring to your attention, and you know why, don’t you? You know it’s because there is no absolute reality. You know that, because even the color red changes from human to human. Even eyesight, depth perception, hearing. I’m deaf in my left ear. I can’t hear the birds chirping in the morning. My best friend is schizophrenic. She texted me the other night about the way the voices seemed different than they usually do — they were alarming when usually they’re calm. How come you hate vanilla ice cream when I love it? How come I care so much about hell when you don’t? How come I’m wrong when I say that truth is relative?

Vanilla ice cream is delicious. There is no absolute truth.

Everything about life is subjective. That is the nature of reality and the beauty of it, too. God will not damn me to hell because he did not reveal the same truth to me that he did to you. God is Abba, Father, Mother, Protector of his/her children in life and in death. He knows where our differences lie. He knows that fear will never be solid ground for my faith, even if it is for you. We aren’t the same.

You know that God is the God of second chances. You know the parable of the Farmer and his workers. He hired men to tend his vineyard, and they worked all day starting in the morning. When afternoon came, he found more men waiting for work, and when he asked them why they were waiting, they said nobody had hired them. So he hired them, and they worked until the end of the day. When the Farmer paid all of the workers the same, the ones who had worked from morning complained. “‘These who were hired last worked only one hour,’ they said, ‘and you have made them equal to us who have borne the burden of the work and the heat of the day.’ But he answered one of them, ‘I am not being unfair to you, friend. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you.'”
(Matthew 20)

God is in control. He will save some of us now and some of us at the mouth of Death. We will never be penalized for waiting.

I’m waiting for God. All of the faithless are waiting. We cannot be cast into hell for the knowledge that is withheld from us.

The road to truth is dim and slippery and every human being is given a separate route.

‎Saturday, ‎June ‎18, ‎2016, ‏‎10:13:06 PM

I’ve found myself struggling to reach a sense of peace.
I haven’t been content since I was a Christian kid.
Dusk felt fresh and everlasting, and on cold nights
at summer camp I would sit by the fire with my
hands tucked into my sleeves. I thought about how
I would die, but I didn’t think about it the way I
do now. I was Christian, so I was guaranteed heaven
when most of the population wasn’t. And I was so
scared that my focus might shift and my worldview
might blend in with society’s until I became part
of the majority that was destined for hell.
Now that’s me, so I haven’t felt stillness for what
seems like a long time. There’s a restlessness
behind everything. Always waiting for peace to come
but no promise that it ever will, just fear and
the intrinsic knowledge that I’ll never really know
anything for certain. It seems melodramatic, but it
seeps into everything. That’s why it’s all I’ve been
able to write about. It’s all I’m able to feel.

Peace feels temporary, like falling asleep in the car.

I know the answer is waiting for me just out of reach.
It’s nestled comfortably on the tip of my tongue, sleeping restlessly.
The answer to what? I’m not sure I can tell you. Just the answer. The solution.
Whatever wind or breath of life that grants me insight has refused
to give me the final solution. The formula.
What beautiful aching I feel in every silence. What savage loss of hope
seizes hold of me when I look at a glorious sunset or sometimes
a perfectly-formed cloud, traced by the sun with rich yellow as if with
a freshly sharpened colored pencil.
Today I told my mom, it’s not that I’m ungrateful, or that I’m
rejecting what God has given me. Dad thinks so because Christianity
feels right to him. It doesn’t feel right to me. I feel, I know,
there’s something that I haven’t found.
I’m not ungrateful, but I’m impatient. I feel dread because
my time is always running out and I don’t know anything.
Life really feels like a test on the chapter of a book I haven’t read.
Can I be held accountable for that? For not knowing despite my
desperate and urgent search? I’m waiting for the answer, but
it hasn’t revealed itself to me. I guess that means I have to find it
by myself, dig through my thoughts until I find whatever it is
I’m even supposed to be looking for.

Ezekiel 35:8-9

my passion is that swarm of locusts
from which emerged John the Baptist
with grime in his hair and earth growing
from the tips of his righteous fingers.

I’m lost in it. the wind that beat against
the mountain on whose crest Elijah stood
to listen for the still small voice of God.

I want to be filled with something pure.
I was always jealous of the dead boy
laid out on the bed for the prophet Elisha,
unconscious and waiting for the renewing
breath of salvation and life.

the Holy Spirit sounds different to me now
than it did when I was in 6th grade.
now it sounds like the call of a Siren,
imploring, desperate, personal, willing
to make any false claim so that it might
snatch up the remnants of my purpose.

my passion is the rope that binds me
to the mast and I’m the only one whose ears
aren’t plugged up with wax. I know that because
I still hear the Sirens.

and I can’t discern the truth.
do I trust those creatures, do I trust my crewmen,
do I trust the violent seething desperate
yearning that fills my lecherous bones?

I think there might be some hope for me.
that so long as I fight to identify the truth,
it cannot be used against me.

my passion is a harlot like Rahab, a grieving
wanderer like Jeremiah, innocent like Ruth
and bloodthirsty like King David.
I’ve asked God for wisdom and he denied
it to me. give me my hundreds of concubines.
give me my desperation and my burning lust
for my same sex. give me bloody battlefields and
corrupted temples and slavery upon slavery upon
slavery. give me Samson’s jawbone dagger and
a dead concubine divided into twelve pieces and
the burning remains of Sodom and Gomorrah and then
show me where God is found in all of that.