Apocrypha (Gregory Horne)

Verity La Heightened Talk

After Bugs Bunny in Drag
the first real girl
I loved sat at the end
of the last pew
in St Lawrence’s.
Next to her,
her jet black mother,
a great hulk of grief,
a lump of observance.
The sacristy beyond
was a closed door
on my Sunday dreams;
behind it, football calls
and the ‘meep’
of the roadrunner,
perhaps a library
of children’s books
written in 1940s America,
telling older tales of loco-
motives and mesas
and circling wagons.
Doors have never
been more closed.
Frankincense shook me
awake and she with hair
like my best friend David,
prayed, I would say,
for my future.
The homily was science
fiction, classic post-war stuff.
A small gold chalice hid
behind a lace veil
in a small gold box.
A red lamp flickered,
but stayed alight,
with all the intensity
of a stolen glance.

 Gregory Horne is a writer and teacher. His poems have appeared in a number of Australian print and online journals including Meanjin, Southerly, Island, Cordite Poetry Review, Rabbit Journal, Verity La, Foam:e and Best Australian Poems 2012. He was shortlisted for the Axel Clark Memorial Prize in 2014. Gregory lives with his wife and three children in the Blue Mountains NSW.