by gm

Amanda Jernigan


Waiting in the hall
I tried to recollect
a mother’s prayer: the Hail
Mary? Now and in
the hour of our death

not right. And anyway
what right had I to say it,
who had it on faith from my atheist
father, a locked box.
Or, rather, open:

ladies and gentlemen, you
are free to inspect the contents
of this box, ‘sickness
and suffering, hatred and jealousy …
greed …’ (yes, also hope).

What is the right prayer
for Ethan? I thought. And thought:
‘What is the right prayer
for Ethan?’