Literature

Illinois

Illinois breathes in me like a bumblebee the prairie.
Giving life and dying all at once, the membrane
of the corpse absorbing into the soil to nourish
some distant generation. Here, we love Jesus
and the fact that he died on the cross so that
we are forever in sin the pastors spoke at Sunday service
behind a curtain of divinity, holiness, and some spirit.
I watch the people here kill themselves day to day.
They choke on spirits and say that it’s for the better.
Once, we seceded from the Union and called it Forgottonia,
claiming that the tax dollars of this state had forgotten us
as we died of disease and the lack of highways to other places.
I argue that we were forgotten not by tax dollars, but by Jesus.
His cross giving this land its meaning and suffocating it all at once.

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