Everything’s Fine & Fucked

poetry 0
Lauren Mallet


I just can’t

remember the saint whose name I took

at my ‘04 Confirmation.

Last year one

friend took Hildegard. She’s a library scientist.

This year another

took Dymphna.

She’s an artist turned celibate. I turn cringey at the sight

of yellow, which

Anatomy of the Spirit

leads me to believe is third chakra stuff. Blocked

energy corresponding

to (*ding ding ding*)

Confirmandi solar plexus intuitive bleh. I wore a salmon knit

sweater with a cowl

neck and tweed

skirt that November. I killed it up there. I was the first or second

reader at the lectern

closest to the stained

glass rolling hills of Bethlehem, warbled panels all of them.

Turns out there were

loads of virgins

to choose from. Duh. So did I really ask for clearance

on Mary Magdalene

as I recounted to

my two dear converted friends? Did Mrs. Zmrhal really scoff

at me in her tricked

out, Berber-carpeted

basement where she and her husband presided over R.E. for us

ragtag bunch of

junior-year misfits?

My peers play-by-played that week’s SNL during

our carpools there

and back. I never had

watched it. Now I won’t let myself look up narthex.

It’s either the post-

Mass doughnut room

or the side bitty chapel where I confessed in the pew behind

Father Ted, all the while

he’s looking to the baseboards,

slow nodding his head, which I guess I took to mean you can’t

surprise me, Lauren, don’t

worry, I’ll stop you if you do.

Lauren Mallett’s poems appear in RHINO, Smartish Pace, Sou’wester, Fugue, Passages North, and other journals. She lives and teaches in Indiana.