God Poem


If you sit long enough in the dark
you can see it, see its texture, press your fingers just
in front of your eyes and feel it, the slight
give and spring of the dark, the

fur of the dark.
The churr and cricket-dense thicket of sound fills
your ears, pours into the drums.
You are underwater in the dark.

Close your eyes. Screw up your mouth like a child.
Don’t scream
just to hear the glub
of your own trapped voice

the rough fist of night thrust down your throat.
Again you’ve confused God with the dark.
One is nowhere. The other wraps around your throat
like vines. We forget

which is which. Feel the dark again.
Press your fingertips against it
lay your palms flat on its breathing flank
press your face into its thick ribs

rub your thumbs against its skin.
It will not eat you nor
will it come close enough. It will not
answer. Don’t scream.

Listen to the crickets twitching inside your ears.
Watch the dark.
If you watch long enough without blinking
your eyes will fool you and it will seem to move.

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Marya Hornbacher
Marya Hornbacher was recipient of a host of awards for her journalism and books. A Pulitzer Prize and Pushcart Prize nominee, Marya frequently lectures at universities and other institutions around the country. Currently at work on a new novel and a collection of essays, she teaches in the graduate creative writing program at Northwestern University.


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