General Poetry posted April 10, 2016

This work has reached the exceptional level
description of how a miracle works

Anatomy of a Miracle (poem sequence)

by Wabigoon

The author has placed a warning on this post for language.
The author has placed a warning on this post for sexual content.
Anatomy of a Miracle

1. The Oracle

I don’t know how  
you put a monkey’s paw
a werewolf’s jaw
Frankenstein’s bile
a sieg hiel
a bunch of vile prophecies
about beasts and Bibles and 666
into the Ouija Board
but you did
and blind
into the white wine
angels pissed 
across Athena’s shield
through snakes
and venom
gory hair
ghastly Medusa’s glare
trickling down
turning little masturbating boys into stone
and you put that in there too
crammed it up
our dreams 
wrapped in a magic bullet
dosed with demons 
hate from Hades
rammed it up the Ouija Board
my daughter and her friend made 
from cardboard 
with crayons
to block in the letters
and the first thing it says
the first thing it speaks
to my daughter
 “God is going to murder you within a year.”

2. Black Feather

let’s take it to the pastor
to the Church
with his bookshelves stuffed with titles like “Cracked”
“Why Bad Things Happen to Beautiful Little Girls”
but not a goddamn thing
about the werewolf 
that came from the Lutheran hot dish basement 
to attack me in a dream

Let’s take it to the school psychologist
maybe he can explain why a Ouija Board would say such a mean thing
send it back to the Parker Brothers for a mouth washing
but you can’t send Oedipus back for a new oracle
a new fate
a new future
new eyes
like the petrified boulder glassies Pastor Bob
puts in his pockets as he prepares his sermon 

Let’s take it to see the psychologist
he’ll assure us it’s all just superstition
but then he hasn't felt the planchette move
like a poison spider in his pants
heading for his penis
with a fatal bite
like Mr. Hyde gave your gay brother with AIDS

who does that leave to fight the oracle?
that leaves you, pal
you, Dumbo 
pathetic, underemployed dad
psycho poet on the burning tower
with all your dream stuff
all your Orpheus mumbo jumbo 
about how you can do stuff down there
make Ouija Boards heel
make a black feather
stand tall

3. Knowing the Dark

I don’t have to explain
how I know the dark
what it is you like to do with the knife
how you like to slit the elastic
on the underpants
release the impulse repressed for centuries 
part the trembling cold blue lips
that do not want prophecies
in them
with the blade’s cold prophecy of death

I know these things
because I’ve seen them
these roots of evil  
the hot yellow terror
warm, crazy

spring pouring down her thigh
just makes you crazy
doesn’t it?
because you can’t have it
so you have to take it
don’t you 

I know you are only you
not  a Thou
not a dread I Am That I Am 
in one dream you wore a priest’s broad brimmed hat
a black veil to hide your face
as we sat face to faceless in a fancy clinic
and you said you wanted to have sex
in the basement
like an explosion in a Francis Bacon painting
with nothing on
but Four Horsemen
with malignant tumors
and no evidence the next morning
except a silly dream
not something I really saw down there

that is how I know you
pious liberal pastor’s shadow
caught in the net
the torn 
semen stained underpants 
where I will abort the death 
of the future
you have so carefully scripted
in your book

4. The Dream

up to me to do what?
burn the Ouija Board?
sue Delphi?
consult the Witch of Endor 
    about whether it will happen or not?
fall on my sword if it does?

or discover who was sowing the wind
our wind
our daughter 
They Call the Wind, Mariah
our inspiration child 
with the guru smile
with a death threat
evil is too meek a word for it
and sic the whirlwind on them?
I will show you how
I will show you how to work miracles

that night I went consciously 
below the Ouija Board the kids had made
I was in a flooded room 
like a swimming pool
        in a museum
maybe the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago

There were letters, numbers
floating on the surface
and down below them
in the far right hand corner 
on the bottom of the room
the Pope
dressed in his white cassock
was just disappearing through a door
because I had seen him
delivering the oracle
sowing the wind with it

I dove toward the bottom to catch him
but when I reached the door 
it opened on St. Peter’s Square
the pigeons exploded upward
but he was gone

5. The Rollover

no poem can describe the horror
of the phone call at 3:00 AM 
almost a year after the vile
threat regurgitated from the Ouija Board 
made with crayons
the phone call at 3:00 AM
it’s your daughter!
she (god) rolled her car off Lake Nancy Road
it’s upside down in that cut over school forest by Pokegama Lake

is she all right!
is she all right!
is the future all right!
is my gorgeous golden haired girl
who gathered flowers
who picked mushrooms
who sat on my shoulders 
and was lighter
than ten thousand Saviors
gave me clowns
and gurus
presented me my magic stick so seriously silly
who made me make laughter 
sliding down the back hill on our snow pants 
who played the disappearing game
made me play dead under a shroud sheet in the kitchen
is she all right?
oh, please, is she all right?
is the future okay?
not the one in the crèche on the Lutheran lawn
the other one
the real one
the one so beautiful
no one else would carry it 
except my gorgeous stupidly brave wife
is she okay? 
is she all right?

they found her
dazed, cold
but conscious 
thrown from the car
in the snow 
she didn’t know who 
or where she was
she has a bad cut on her head
but she’s alive
they’ve taken her down to Spooner Hospital

no poem can describe
the cold sober drive 
through 4:00 AM morgue mist 
deer lurking like ghosts of suicides 
along the highway 
ready to fling themselves in front of us
to keep us reaching the Underworld

6. The Miracle

we wait in the cold, dark hall
with high school art on the walls
for the results of the CAT scan
Mariah sleeps through 
then hold her hand 
as glass is dug from her forehead
nothing more serious than bumps, bruises
            a totaled car
it was a “miracle”
she was thrown through the window
otherwise she’d be dead
says her friend
it was miraculous
we are informed she wasn’t wearing her seat belt
otherwise her golden curled head
would be smashed like a pumpkin
her neck broken
it’s a miracle she’s alive
says the kindly local doctor
considering what might have happened

no, it’s a goddamned fucking miracle
I eliminated the Pope
from the oracle of the pool 
beneath the Ouija Board
It’s a miracle 
I have been working this section of road for a year
against Cameron’s Titanic
and his model of the powerless artist of the future   
It’s a “miracle”
I have managed to keep it free 
of grief counselors with vampire fangs
priests and pastors with lessons to teach us 
homilies covered with blood
psychologists who want to counsel us
fundamentalists with visions
of the new church they plan to build on the spot
where the virgin spring
burbled up from beneath her head

It is a miracle
I picked up the newspaper
lying on the ground of St. Peter’s Square
it was from a few years in the future
“Catholic Sex Abuse Scandal May Bankrupt the Church!”
The headline blared

I knew then 
that the sowers of the death threat
for the wind
our wind
our Mariah
our inspiration child
would reap the whirlwind
I had aimed


Poem of the Month contest entry


I believe it is possible to not only see into the realm where miraculous events originate but also to act there. I think it is of the utmost importance for humans, writers and artists in particular, to reclaim this realm. Toward that end I am posting this sequence of poems.
Pays one point and 2 member cents.

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