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Clam Chowder

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Seated on metal

folding chairs,

the most obscure coronation

you’ll ever encounter

“Praise Jesus

Praise the Lord!”

says the mare

with the clouded coat

over the steaming clam chowder

as the holy water pours and pours

from the mouth

of the Father

“Praise Jesus

Praise the Lord!”

for the three

who came off the

street and their

Blurred vision

ignited by the

crossfires of

the six pupils;

“Praise Jesus

Praise the Lord!”

for the nonbelievers

us and them—

us versus them

(the six

popping in and

out of the pews

like the groundhogs

of february)

and the one with the shaky hands

in the red shirt asking the questions,

and the one with the voice of flowing water,

and a mother and daughter

and the lesbians

“What makes a man a man of God?”

for you young girls who turn

around looking for men

“What will you be studying next year?”

for you young girls who

must make something?

Oh, just the ingredients

to a hot bowl of

clam chowder





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