Always Messing with them Boys
Jessica Helen Lopez             

That Following Sunday

The carpeted halls of the church
sigh and moan under the weight
of my sex, the musk of wax
and wails from beneath veiled hats

The pews complain and hold
back the pantyhose women,
pressed perms and palms
their prayers play to beg
a god to forgive such thoughts

The skin beneath the clothes
stowed away to smother the
heat between the legs under
the mounds of Sundayfs best
rippled silk, heavy hosiery and
the crushed kerchief

I avert my eyes
in the holiest of angles
position my gaze to
seem chaste
the thick velvet
tapestries breathe
as I fall to thoughts
of Eve.

While my mother mumbles like
the Madonna, she shoulders me
into the corner pew, bullies me
to my knees makes me
heavy with Jesus
as she loses herself to the coupling
of faith she prays for my salvation

The candles sweat
we eat bread
as I remember
like a lost wallet, a forgotten slipper
my virginity remains
in the tangle of sheets
the folds of duvet
and the twist of sex
pillowcases bloodied
by the scarlet letter of
my favorite lipstick
long black hair
coiled on his lumpy mattress
we burned incense and
it smelled like Sunday

And that sordid bible
the dubious note ?
that sordid bible!
thick and black and
gilded golden pages
it lay like an empty canoe
on his nightstand
when he undid
my nightshirt
and I let him
and I helped him
that empty eye
socket that stared
the one that taught
me all the sins
I ever needed to know
for many lifetimes over
and over
and over

naked truth
the oddity of beauty
that up-close and
stolen look
small and shriveled
in a heap of hair
the apple of the buttock
the fermented fruit that I invited
to create the gorge
that became the thigh

And I
cross myself
hope to know
we canft all be Mary
and I regret nothing