The Agnostic's Prayer by Mark Flanigan



                 "Lord/I had such a good time and I don't
                  regret anything--/What happened to the prayer
                  that goes like that?"
                                        Franz Wright, "Kyrie"

The morning is of no concern to me
despite there being nothing more embarrassing

than a corpse. Little
dead feet, little dead hands

with no one to hold them.
So little dignity in life,

and even less in death. We
go for a swim at 7 a.m. or

play cards while the sun rises.
The morning is of no consequence to us.

Every time I flick on a light switch
a bulb burns out. Every time I

fill the soap dispenser, it overflows.
Maybe there is a lesson here.

Outside the rain falls as if angry.
Inside there is a spider in the tub

I must remove before running
water. What if we are only spiders

living precipitously by a drain? I live that way,
love that way. It’s not worth being saved

by something less kind than me. Fuck mystery,
give me joy; that is mystery enough. 

Let it rain, let it rain, let it rain: Books
are like parents, they mostly show you

how not to live. I haven’t embarrassed any
body by taking my web underground.  

stopped doing it / ralph la charity



I wanted to make a poem you could stay inside of
one that you'd say over & over, & over everywhere
you'd could & you'd would would be how it would go
one that whenever you'd keep at it you'd always be
in, circling onward inside itself & outwardly radiative
rolling like that, and feeding off resonance just that way
and by resonance I mean aloud even in the wee hours
even when making love or idling along in a pew or 
while stopped in traffic or paused above the abyss
the old joke about sliding down a bannister of Light
one that'd end precisely when you stopped doing it