A pale cathedral in ruins
stands emptied of the faithful
with their out-of-focus faces
stretched in Sunday sermon smiles.
A stubborn zombie descant lingers
underneath the flying buttress
where sticky alleluias echo
a perfect third below the root.
Shards of rare Italian panes
strewn in random pretty piles
are the stained-in-glass remains
from the frantic strange-winged beatings
of flawed and tragic birds.
They were only aiming for a bright hole
--for an exit to punch into
dazzled by the blueness
of what might have been the sky.
Walls disguised as windows
are an elegant distraction
from another boring sermon
about faith or leprosy.
They crushed themselves against
the lies that didn’t even open
shattered glass and broken feathers
left behind like something holy
--a relic to alley-peddle later
some bloody souvenir.
© 2010 susan beck
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