Prayer over a Cigarette
Lord, ruin me with your hand, smitten with growing
something of my turmoil, of my ruination.
Even this ritual of dying, Lord, it is more than enough:
of breathing in a cremation
and blowing out carbon syllables from stars
millions of years from touch.
Lord, I know I am imperfect. You know this because
I run through wheat fields naked as a lark
singing Bob Seeger, wishing the darkness will never end.
I am addicted to the breath. I am addicted to the practice
of nightfall illuminated between my fingertips.
I am addicted to both the failure of the body
and the failure of the words you’ve learned from us.
Even this, I know, will pass
like vapor in front of eyes that peer through the wilderness
searching for a shape of you in them.
If you are listening, if you too are breathing,
I would pass this flame to you hoping you’d place your lips
over the filter, so that, when it returns to me
I can taste the millions of years you’ve kept on your tongue
Samuel J Fox is a non-binary, bisexual writer living in the Southern US. They/He is poetry editor for Bending Genres, a nonfiction reader for Homology Lit, and frequent columnist/reviewer for Five2One Magazine. They/He appears in many online/print journals and also in dilapidated places, coffee houses, and graveyards, depending. They/He Tweets (@samueljfox).