Looking for God
We’re going to the back yard to look for God,
I say. Double-layer your legs
and zip your hood. We’re going to look
for God in the cold
wind. We’re going to hang out with the dogs.
Leash the rowdy one to the swing set.
When you stray within his reach, he knocks you
down in patches of snow. He goes in
for a kiss with his wet snout. I brush off the crystals
caking your rear end, airlift and release you
elsewhere. We’re going to look for God elsewhere,
I say. Still the icicled swings lure and ensnare.
Wind gnaws our noses, your cheeks furnaced red
from within. Paws knock you down again
into the seashell shards of ice.
We’re going to look for God in the ice, I suggest,
sheets of cracked ice on the back patio.
Stay away from the dogs.
Birding on a Sunday Morning
Sunday morning too April
bright in rising sun to know a grackle
from a robin, dark silhouettes
plunge beak first into the plush, shoulders
pumping. They surface swinging
earthworms, snap in half the tender
segments, tidbits from the underground.
Sunday morning too April bright
to know an acorn from a scarab, I swear
I saw a grackle choking down
an acorn, its yellow meth head eyeball
fastened upon me, its iridescent coat
too motor oil slick for it to have been one
of the starlings in black waistcoats,
wings held back like hands. Nineteenth century
surgeons, they dip the golden sewing
needles of their beaks into the green, suturing
the streetlight’s long incision
of shadow. Sunday morning I stay
at home. I want God the way I want you.
I want Him for myself. No one else can know.
Cameron Morse was diagnosed with a glioblastoma in 2014. With a 14.6 month life expectancy, he entered the Creative Writing program at the University of Missouri—Kansas City and, in 2018, graduated with an M.F.A. His poems have been published in numerous magazines, including New Letters, Bridge Eight, and South Dakota Review. His first collection, Fall Risk, won Glass Lyre Press's 2018 Best Book Award. His second, Father Me Again, is available from Spartan Press and third, Coming Home with Cancer, belongs to Blue Lyra Press's Delphi Poetry Series. He lives with his wife Lili and son Theodore in Blue Springs, Missouri, where he manages Inklings' FOURTH FRIDAYS READING SERIES with Eve Brackenbury and serves as poetry editor for Harbor Review. For more information, check out his Facebook page or website.