Volume 11, October 2014

francine j. harrisView Contributor’s Note

How to take down an altar

First, remove your Mary. Take the chains from her neck.
then smack out the candles with a pillow. Stack the books

under Paul in boxes. Lift up
the snakes. uncover the faces. Take

the incense dust in both hands and cross Barbara.
Unhinge Jesus carefully, at each panel. Move

the Angels by their buttocks, not their wings.
Unplug Magdalene. Take away the black gauze

from the face of Judas. Pull the river foam
below the roses, lay it under both Moses.

Wrap Adam and Eve
in light citrus and borax. Make a clay paste

to preserve the face of God. Bury the
cigarettes. the apple peels. the meat.