Saying My Prayers

By. Chris Middleman

Tonight I built a pile
of all last month’s junkmail
on my kitchen table

After holding a match to it,
it burned like a bonfire
I opened the window
so this credit card offer incense
could make some deity happy
somewhere, on some throne

The air outside is cold as
the only expression I see
on the faces of anyone here

I know they want me to look like that too
They’ll do their damnedest

I’m lighting another cigarette
and cursing that weak snowstorm this morning
Dreaming of boats rocking back and forth
far away from here, in Shilshole Bay

Every slow exhalation of smoke
is another greedy prayer of mine
floating away
on gusts of arrogant, frustrating wind

Chris Middleman began writing almost ten years ago during a blackout in his hometown of Downingtown, Pennsylvania. Currently living in Boston, his work has appeared in issues of both Perigee and The Orange Room Review.