Poems as Prayers (for Alan Kaufman) ~ William Taylor Jr

You say poems
are prayers,

and I’ve always
imagined them so.

But prayers not scraping
for favors from a bitter god

of tawdry heavens
and slaughterhouse hells,

but prayers to ourselves
and our fellow creatures
upon the earth,

prayers not asking
forgiveness but offering;

released like magic children
into the lonely city

where they drift
through streets
and alleys,

up and down the hills
with the fog

where someone may see
and understand

and maybe be a little bit saved

as they go about their way

in this church of a life,
this commune of the spirit.

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