of salvation is exactly
what I don’t want to hear about
right now. And it’s not
just that I know it’s not
likely to include me. Have you heard,
my friend asks, the story about
the horses at nightfall? Or the one
where we’re lost in the forest?
Of course I realize it’s easier
to get into any heaven you’ve made
up for yourself, that the whole point
of religion is that it isn’t
whatever you happen to need
at the moment. Somebody tells you,
because somebody knows. That’s why
there are rules. Maybe consequences
will occur, my friend suggests,
which we can’t foresee, creating
conditions we may find ourselves
powerless to control. These days
who can tell? So there we are,
out in the weather, out in the cold.
And yes, I’d say it seems to have
some punishment in mind.