Christening


That names are not names

was clear from the scriptural start.

Asked his, the mtn.

says mine is Whatever, 

or, I Know it and You Don't,

or Not Having Parents Prevents,

but basically I Demure. 

The demons offer: my name

is Many, or Rank and File. It's 

Number, essentially Lots. 

And even Lot's is symbolic, 

implying Chance or Chosen: 

the drawn one.

None of them names so much 

as tags: #walkswithbigstick or

#boyswillbeboys.

But mine, mine means a question.

Who is like the Lord? Mother

thought the answer was implied: I.

I'm not so sure, though

appreciate the gesture:

I am What Time Is It? Or, 

Which Way is Up? Do You 

Have a Lemon I Could Borrow? 

Who is like you, O Unnameable,

Not It and Not It? Caller who refuses

to be called, except as Help Us, 

who names and tasks with naming? 

Help us, Minus and Presence, 

when you make it, to conceive 

the reference.


— from The Elegy Beta. Copyright © 2018. First published in Saint Katherine Review 6.1.