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Editor's Note


SNR's Writers


The Dress You Cried "Amazing Grace" Into.

Your black dress tugging curtly at your hips, you stood high-heeled,
arrogant as mercy.  The dress's casual, flowing sag stunned me; you
tip-toed gently, standing nose in the air—invincible with tears.  It
left me in love with you, that dress you bought the night your grandma

Easter Sunday

Wooden pews fade under the church's
gloomy lighting system, another reason
the preacher's sermon ought mention tithes,
even if Easter.  The crowds shuffle
inside, the earliest plopping into seats
at the back, the starched suits and florid dresses
seem to glow with newness—the mark
of the Creaster.  The regulars
have keen eyes for their kind, making a point
of introducing themselves to the unfamiliar
faces during congregational greeting,
the kind of eyes that poke your chest
and say, You haven't been here
since last Easter, that reveal the heavy-handed
absence of God and slump in disappointment
when the sermon passes over
weathered hymnals and funds for mission
trips and vacation bible school and the poor
sound system, the dim lighting.
Those eyes that refuse to believe
heaven holds a place for the likes of anyone
who only comes to church
on Easter, eyes that remind us
Easter eggs are what it's all about, and bunnies
are much more faithful than ghosts.

The Joneses'

Rain slaps the tin roof and throws
a tantrum; the wind-wail lobs
golf-ball-sized hail, thumping the windows,

and bends trees that snap
like bed-ridden mothers after giving birth
to stillborns.

It's too dark to hear anything,
else—not even the radio, the weatherman,
or his tornado warning.  Coincidentally

I'm on my knees praying
for disaster— for a twister to implode
through town, taking out the Jones's house

with them still inside.  I can almost hear them
suffocating, drowning in all their success,
but when the cameramen come to stand by

and film the cleanup, it'll only frustrate
me more, knowing full well
we'll never keep up.

Copyright 2007, Taylor Collier. © This work is protected under the U.S. copyright laws.
It may not be reproduced, reprinted, reused, or altered without the expressed written permission of the author.

Taylor Collier is currentlly a Master's student in the Creative Writing program at the University of North Texas.  His work has appeared in places such as Main Street Rag, The Oklahoma Review, Why Are We In Iraq? and Big Tex[t].