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Christ Is the Kind of Guy

Robert Priest
From:   The Man Who Broke Out of the Letter X. Toronto: Coach House Press, 1984.


Christ is the kind of guy
you just can't help hurting
No matter how much you love him
when you walk you stumble into him
you push him accidentally from a window
If you back the car out
you will find him squashed behind the wheels
broken on the door--all over the grate
Christ has the kind of skin
that bruises when you hold him
the kind of face that
kisses cut
He is always breaking open
when we go to embrace him
Christ the haemophiliac
even the gentlest people can't help
wounding Jesus Christ
They are always running for a band-aid
and then pulling open his old wounds
on a nail
If there is a cross in your house
you will find yourself bumping up against him
accidentally
moving him closer and closer to it
his arms continually more and more
widespread as he talks
Christ is the kind of guy
who can't help falling asleep like that
his arms spread wide as though over the whole world
You have a dream with a hammer
You are making a house
In the morning you awake
and find him up there on the crossbeams
one hand nailed to the door frame
"Look Jesus" you say
"I don't want to be saved like this!"
But then you hurt him
extra
taking him down
you pry at the nails savagely
but it's no use
Christ is the kind of saviour
you can only get off a cross
with a blow torch
"Father forgive them" he says
as you begin to burn his hands



Robert Priest's works copyright © to the author.


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