I may never march in the infantry, [stomp in place]
Ride in the cavalry, [hold imaginary reins]
SHOOT! the artillery, [clap, make a cannonball fist]
I may never fly over the enemy, [arms as wings]
But I’m in the Lord’s Army, YES SIR! [stiff-backed salute]
God was the imperceptible sphere formed
by innumerable spy satellites capable
of determining whether or not
my dinner fork lay right of my salad fork.
By the light of His infrared gaze I tried
to count how many sins I could scrape
out from under my fingernails, lost
track, grew sleepy, woke up in the infantry
in the Lord’s Army. Those pushups
they made us do only made my arms
tired and when I asked if the enemy
was also doing pushups and if
so, how many could they do,
and who won the Last Great
Pushup Battle? When I asked
that they made me do extra.
My fellow GI assigned to clean the latrines
helped me perfect my insubordination:
Appreciate that hiss of a lit
match dropped into the toilet!
Let’s call God
unjust—He’ll just fry us
with His holy magnifying glass
and remain in the right, since
it’s His magnifying glass, His light!
I learned to use cleaning supplies
to graffiti bright heresies into the ceiling.
At my court martial, the corporal-slash-attorney
accused me of striking doubt
against flint to light faith’s
tattered curtains (I wanted
to let more light in).
The courtroom door shook
with a gentle knocking.
My Lord, Your Honor, I see
men as trees, walking
into a forest of fire that does not consume.
I appealed my case
to a higher court, where I was found
guilty and my sentence
was perpetual forgiveness.