God and a Chainsaw–
“The Lord your God is in your midst,
a mighty one who will save;
he will rejoice over you with gladness;
he will quiet you by his love;
he will exult over you with loud singing.”
Fear and Deceit planted weeds
In the soil of my heart.
The seeds sprouted and weaseled through.
I never put a hoe at their base,
Or dug their roots out of the dirt.
Their stumps strong, blooms
Beautiful, offering nauseating nectar.
Like a honey-bee in Spring, I paused
Over each bud, harvesting its opinion.
This nectar, I stored, held onto,
Believed the sickening feeling.
Through my ngers, my tears provided
The moisture required.
This weed lacked nothing. I gave it permission
To climb, bloom and loom over me
Till I believed it to be a true fruit tree
Who might bear beauties to nourish me.
Limbs reached and roots dug deeper,
Deeper; I lived with this weed
Planted by Fear, by Deceit.
But I did not see it as such. It filled
Its slithering form.
This Manchineel spread sap and
My hands held no weapons against.
Roots wrapped tight to force belief.
Limbs stout like titanium triggers on guard.
Father wraps his hands around it;
The stump ran deep, cut at the base.
Root shoots pulled out, left trenches.
Poison washed away, scattered soil, hollow heart.
But grace fills trenches; love grants healing.
According to Editor-in-Chief Hannah Cauthen, “The Chimes is a student-produced literary magazine which gives students, faculty, and alumni the opportunity to see their work published and admired.” Cauthen says that reconstruction is an appropriate theme because “Shorter itself has gone through many periods of reconstruction.” The following poem is a work taken from the 101st edition of The Times.