Coventry Cathedral 1944
that once beckoned the pilgrim
to raise her eyes heavenward—
now lays mixed among the rubble
of beam and mote
and prostrate Christ
like broken prayers.
A chaplain—an agent of light—
surveys the rubble
picks up one red piece
then one blue
and tucks them into his pocket
with the promise
that God hears all prayers.
Rebecca Bateman wishes she had a hundred lives to do a thousand things. She dabbles in cooking, gardening, literature, writing, stained-glass work, sewing, and foreign languages. She was the executive director for LDS Earth Stewardship, staff for the Utah House of Representatives, an organizer of the 2015 Parliament of the World’s Religions, a member of the Salt Lake Interfaith Roundtable, a board member of the Golden Rule Project, and a mentor to a refugee family. She wants to help create a peaceful world and visit every bit of it.
Peace like a river, they say
but I have seen rivers slice canyons through mountains.
I remember drowning in the Yakima river,
tumbled under the press of the current,
knees bruising against polished rock.
My thoughts as swift as the flow that
dragged me, fingers clawing for purchase
on the bank, until I went under.
Above me refracting shades of blue and green,
the panic subsided as time slowed to a crawl.
The strangest calm. Feeling my waterlogged
canvas shoes slipping from my feet.
Peace like a river
a stillness amid the roar
surrendering my course
as the river cuts a path to the sea.
Kelly Moore is a graduate from BYU-Idaho with a BA in Creative Writing. She currently lives in Soda Springs, Idaho, with her husband and two sons.
After visiting the historic town,
by the time I fall asleep, I’m fishing.
The rod and the river, a mayfly
fluttering at my temple, knee-high numb,
pants suctioned against skin.
The river glares with the window-print
light that falls across the walls
when cars pass outside.
Waking at midnight,
I tried to imagine erasing myself
feet first but my toes just felt swollen.
After a four hour shift of breathing deep,
I opened the window three stories high
and screenless, like a door to an attic
or a rip through a curtain.
Shingled roofs descend to the
river banks, two freeway-exits away.
At the river bank, the water glows.
Beyond, factory lights
pin the mountain like stars.
Nets of silver light roll
in the water with the early opening sky.
A rug of woven tire-strips tied
over slick rock a trail head away.
It’s easy to think that faith
is about catching fish.
Alizabeth Worley has published poems, essays and graphic nonfiction in Iron Horse Literary Review, Hobart, Sweet: A Literary Confection, and elsewhere. Her husband, Michael, is an attorney with Cerebral Palsy. They make hobbies of eating breakfast for dinner, watching The Good Place, and walking around their Alma Mater (also BYU) together, especially while the bells are playing. Swimming was a favorite date, and then they had kids. Fortunately for Lizzie, Michael is a great sport when it comes to Lizzie’s art and writing, always willing to look at her work and lavish her with compliments and gentle suggestions. You can find more of her work at alizabethworley.com