Gregory Fraser

I Must Be a God

just look how the whole Atlantic sprays my feet with kisses
a god
or a matador at least
sidestepping month after month
charges of the two-horned moon

I might have been one of those unfortunates forced
to live below a sky without color or cloud
under a flaming cipher

or one of the innocents torn from their beds like crabmeat from shells

Something always clued me though
when to hide or run
and you see
I had the patience of a cathedral step

Were I a pebble I would disturb your window
sleep
bearing words of apologetic longing

I am not

Were I mud clinging to a bank afraid of drowning
I would cry out for chivalrous compassion

No
I must be a god

A nameless weight kin to love loss slows the blood of many

but look at the overjoy of thrashers
my state birds
rushing toward me

Even in my absence they hurtle toward the big bay
windows of my twice
mortgaged temple

and leave as offerings head feathers stuck to the glass!

Gregory Fraser is the author of Strange Pietà (Texas Tech), Answering the Ruins and Designed for Flight (Northwestern), and co-author of Writing Poetry and Analyze Anything. He serves as a professor of English at the University of West Georgia.