False Idol
Written 5.10.07

A barrier—
not just a barrier,
a barbed-wire,
ten-foot concrete
forest whose
understory gets
no sunlight—

keeps me from
knowing my God.

It is a barrier
that I created,
all on my own,
without realizing it.

I know just what it is now.
It is what fuels my apathy
and let me say to my mother
in all sincerity
that I wouldn't care if she died.

My barrier, my false idol,
my Baal, my Asherah,
is bitterness.

I take my carefully sculpted idol,
smash it to pieces on the ground,
and change my name to Elijah.