A Cautionary Tale

Pastor Jim heaves himself up the steps,

Mops his brow and, winded, pants,

"It is a sin to carouse, gamble and drink,

But even worse to dance."

That is the word, but just then a bird

Flies in and cracks Jim in the skull;

After turning the page, he falls off the stage

And dies, creating a lull.

Deacon Don frowns, throws himself on the ground,

And cries, "Jesus has called our Jim home!"

Is there something celestial about a disoriented kestrel

That flew in and did in his dome?

Like a helium balloon, Jim's soul rose through the room,

Toward the voice of a late pop diva;

He passed Hottentots and Hindus, sitting in the windows,

And three shiksas who kindly sat shiva.

He rose up and found God in the Heavenly place,

Cutting a rug with some woman named Bubbles;

Jim saw He was a She, and mumbled "Dear me,

This is only the start of my troubles."

The natural fact is, there's a Heaven for Baptists,

Though it's not clear why anyone goes there;

Everything's gray, and nobody's gay,

And the angels have quite disturbing nose hair.

Meanwhile, Jim's flock got over their shock,

And buried him out in the churchyard;

But kids dug him up and that night set him up

On a flaming pyre of birch bark.

So ends my tale of the church on the plain,

Jim is gone and his body is toasted;

His name is now written in Heavenly fame,

Though there's a rumor that says it was ghosted.


artwork: "Archy & Mehitabel" by Don Marquis



Fireblossom said…
NOTE: personal observations by the author were planned for this space, but unfortunately, she has been hit by lightning and is unable to attend.

Please leave your own comments, and they will all be forwarded to her in the rest home.
Jannie Funster said…
I hope the author will trim her nose hairs in heaven?

Lightening's a bitch when it hits, I've been struck 3 times now. Hair's all grown back, don't mine my new mustache, and wearing Depends really is not all that bad once you get used to it and big baggy pants.

I LOVE your poetry. And you!

Blue Bunny said…

i nummbir three of kommints! hoo-woo

pleze giv a kiss to bosko for me, thanks yoo.

What a delightful poem, you rock it!
dustus said…
I think you're one-in-a-million, Shay—though according to National Weather Service Lightening Safety, you are considered 1 in 500 thousand for being struck. Seriously, great poem. Always enjoy reading your work.
Lynn said…
That's why I'm not Baptist anymore - I was afraid of the nose hair. :)
ellen abbott said…
shall we set it to music and dance?
Riot Kitty said…
I wish more of those types would get called home!
TALON said…
Angels with disturbing nose hairs...glad I'm not going to heaven :)
faye said…
I'm still waiting for the lightning bolts....no way they hit you first.
Unknown said…
Thank Goddess I am a Unitarian and we just don't believe in hell..phew...so I can enjoy this poem with all the glorious and lush felt wonderful and amazing prose that it is without worrying about lightening striking me down...

I love you this was abosoflippinlutely brilliant!!!

Love you
steveroni said…
THANK GODDESS that the author didn't go "all the way" in that lightning...to meet with Jim in that baptist heaven--on her way to the Eternal Bliss!


Oooops. (Maybe I blew it again). Oh! Now for SURE I....oh well! It was fun being here for annual "week with Fire Blossom".

If I change my name...and other crapola--can I return?--grin!

This post was absolutely the BEST THING I've read for a Blong time! REALLY! Thank You, Shay!!!
Anonymous said…
So much fun! I love this.

Unknown said…
Now that's quite a tale. Just the thing to end my Sunday, and send me off to bed with a good belly laugh.
Mama Zen said…
And, that concludes the Word Garden Sunday prayer meeting!

Y'all come back!
Mojo said…
Pie Jesu Domine...
Dona Eis Requiem


Not my kinda heaven either. Though the grayscale part I might not mind... for a while. But having to hang around with all those Repugicans for all eternity? Thanks anyway.
Brian Miller said…
haha. that is brilliant...right down to the disturbing nose hairs...lol. yeah i dont want to go there as well...and i am alright with God in a dress...or jeans...and listening to something that is a little harder...
Daryl said…
"And three shiksas who kindly sat shiva."

I started to laff when I read this and could not stop .... I bet there is a very large closet somewhere labeled BAPTISTS ...
Anonymous said…
This made me laugh out aloud. lol

Great stuff.
signed...bkm said…
What a marvelous read Fireblossom, do not know now I missed this one yesterday...been there...that is why i pray with my dog....love the part about -why anyone would what to go there...Baptist Heaven... bkm
Sara said…
I can't believe you used artwork from archy & mehitabel!! I have one of Don Marquis books that I inherited from my dad and he got it from my grandfather.

I always loved the cartoons and the stories of the cockroach who was once a "vers libre bard."

BTW I also enjoyed the poem:~)
Tess Kincaid said…
Oh yeah. You got that Baptist heaven right.
Red Shoes said…
This reminds me of something I read the other day... it went something like this...

Do you know why Baptists don't have sex while standing up??

It looks too much like dancing...



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