Friday, July 08, 2005

Just As I Am

Just As I Am

Brother Chitwood calls me to the altar
lays his hands on me.

“Just as I am
without one plea.”

Leans down
hand on my shoulder
as his lips brush my ear

Do you know Jesus pretty girl?

I am flushed by his glory.
Tony Price made me feel like that once
but Mama said no boys till I turn fifteen.

So we go to church to be saved
sit on hard pews and wait
till Brother Chitwood calls us down.

Mama loves Brother Chitwood
he washes away her sins every Sunday
every Wednesday, sometimes even on Saturday.

“But that thy blood
was shed for me.”

One night after prayer meeting
when mama has choir practice
he calls me to his office.

Are you saved pretty girl?

He pulls up a chair next to his
just for me.

Let’s bow our heads and pray together.

I close my eyes.
His honey words are smooth
steady like his caress of my thigh.

Jesus show us the way home.

He prays long, plies his hands like an artisan
tapered fingers spark my flesh.

“And that Thou bidst me
come to Thee.”

My ears ring loud and louder.
My head throbs
loins tingle.

“O Lamb of God
I come I come.”

My spirit escapes that sinful body
and Brother Chitwood
in a trail of blood.

*The hymn, “Just As I Am,” was published by Charlotte Elliott in1835.

1 comment:

r said...

C, such a sad poem. You catch the honesty of the girl so well.