Before the war we bury the windows
Before we bury the windows we take them down

The tallest of us altar boys 
lifts a purple blade from a frozen robe

& holds it with both hands 
before handing it to me
at the bottom of the ladder

I don’t understand how anyone can make
a shard of glass a weapon

blood would draw its borders on both of us
my hand          your chest

The boy peels a red plate from the flat dusk
behind Christ

We’re told heaven is beautiful but I think
I’ll miss parsnips          coriander
sky tempering the aluminum gutters
of our houses

The boy hands me two hard fingers 
brought together in benediction

then the bow of a halo like a bottom lip

The stained glass makes its way underground
& makes way for sunlight 

There’s a basement where we wait out the war

We touch each other’s cheeks light with hair
I think I’ll miss my nose          how water
damage makes cologne of the missals

This poem is supported in part by the National Endowment for the Arts.

Since you’re here, you probably believe, like us, that work like this should be accessible to anyone who wants to read it. That’s why the entire archive of The Believer is available online for free.

The Believer is made possible solely through the incredible support of a community or readers and writers around the world. Please consider making a donation to The Believer today. Along with receiving a deluge of gratitude from the entire team, all donors are thanked in a print issue of The Believer, and every cent helps.

Back to previous

You May Also Like


Adele Extends Las Vegas Residency and Announces Concert Film

After wrapping up a successful run of 34 shows at the Colosseum at Caesars Palace, Adele has announced an extension……


Resident Evil 4 Remake: Gameplay Experience and PS5 Enhancements

The Resident Evil 4 remake is a thrilling experience for players with diverse play styles, resulting in varying completion times…….


Crash Team Rumble Set to Launch with Closed Beta and Pre-Orders

Activision and Toys For Bob have officially announced the release date for Crash Team Rumble, set to launch on June……

related articles

An Interview with Alison Pill

September All Year Long

An Interview with Will Eno

articles about Archive

President Biden Honors Renowned Figures with 2021 National Medals of Arts and Humanities

March 23, 2023

Social Media’s Impact on Teen Mental Health and Brain Development

March 22, 2023

Elden Ring’s First Anniversary: Over 9 Billion Deaths, 20 Million Copies Sold, and Anticipation for Upcoming DLC

March 22, 2023


March 20, 2023

An Interview with Doseone Copy

January 27, 2023