The bishop adjusts the oversized tongue
of his tie and preaches the importance of Sunday
best and the blessing of uniformity, skimming
through his Book of Mormon; the pews flutter
with scripture as everyone thumbs to Moroni
and reads the supporting verse. Demon-skin
descends from the ceiling, red
as Webster's dictionary. They move to sacrament,
ignore his wingspan, spell transubstantiation
through prayer. Two sable horns curl
like paralyzed tails around his face. He blows smoke
through his nostrils and forks the oversized tie
of his tongue against his teeth. He towers
two severed heads above the bishop, grinning
hooves clopping alongside the hardwood podium
like gorillas. He stretches with a heavy groan,
muscle-bound — a deceased bodybuilder ejaculating
from hell, metamorphosed. Unclad, the meaty sword
of his erection fails to raise an eyebrow —
the couples bound in Celestial Marriage,
their many children, and the elders. Subdue
the sins of thy flesh, they say. The deacon
ahems, holding a tray of dissevered Home Pride,
the manifestation vaporizing into reality.
My tie tightens as I select the perfect piece.
He flashes teeth at me and moves along the pew,
his grin the curve of an angel's wing
I admire every week. Mouse-tailing, I adjust
my dress pants, the belt a constricting snake —
the devil returning — and I wonder why
Eve was never criticized for her nakedness.
The bishop masticates, swallows bread, his Adam's
apple a bobbing fist; I want to crack his knuckles.
I want him to shout upwards, strip to nothing
but coffee-dark hair goosebumped by the gelid air
of truth, and toss his scriptures aside for once
to preach a sudden change of heart.
Author’s Bio: William Soule is a Filipino-American poet from Utah. He's a featured poet at One Night Stanzas and has poems published in Tattoo Highway, the delinquent, elimae, and Every Day Poets, among others. He also unleashes a pent-up ADHD on the drums and raises his surrogate child, a two-year old pit bull.