Poetry

Sin of Omission

From the collection, Folk

The priest
was Haitian and unpopular, sent
from Halifax to lift the
church’s sinking numbers.
Someone made a joke about
    colonialism.
Someone made a joke about
how he choked on certain words:
    roshery, Simmeritin,
    Good instead of God.
He liked his vestments arranged
in a reliable order, would
reach for them blindly, one
finger on his scripture.
He had me come in early to
heat and light the room, dust
the Christ-bearing frames
of the Passion. On the Sunday
of the crash, he
decided not to mention it, said
Those people
in the ocean, those people
are not us.

This appeared in the June 2010 issue.