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Alyson Kissner

Honorable Mention 2009 Novice Christian Poetry Contest $100

About this Christian Poet:
I am a sixteen-year-old grade eleven student. Writing has always been my primary means of expression, and I feel both humbled and blessed to have had my submission accepted. This has been the first formal contest in which I have entered my poetry. I also recently won the top Youth Writes award for grades 8–12 in the Lower Mainland of British Columbia, presented by the Vancouver International Writers Festival.

About this Poem:
I have always been a very visual person, and one day, I woke up with the image of a figurine Jesus, tucked away in a coat pocket. I think this poem was more of me dissecting this than anything else, and like most things, I tried to reveal its secrets through a story. I ended up wondering how it was that society can just put God away and take Him out when needed: redemption for a wrong doing, comfort during a time of sadness... Do the consequences no longer exist for us? Does sin really apply when we are constantly forgiven?

Pocket Jesus

She's just a suburban girl
With red acrylic nails
And sky-high hair
That brings her closer to God.

Cherry bubble lip chap
Stains her diner napkin,
Scribbled with a number
She's already prepared.

A man walks into the bar
With his new cowboy boots.
And she sits next to him—
The aroma of leather strong in the air
As she leans over to say hello.

He speaks in an uptown drawl—
One that sizzles of taxis and late nights in office chairs.
His shoes are shinier than the rest of the boys back home.
He says he has a Cadillac
And she wonders if he's the one.

But she's never been to the city—
Never even dreamed.
Well, maybe once,
As a child:
Before dreaming became out of style.

And she has style.
Yes, she has style.
She hears it in the whistles of the men lining the street—
And she has faith,
So surely she believes.

She asks him for his name,
But he says it doesn't matter,
Because the beautiful things are better left unsaid.
And she is charmed.
And she is beautiful.
And they toast to it with twenty shots of boxed wine.

And in the morning,
Her head fuzzy with dreaming,
And her body still drunk,
She picks up her stilettos,
And makes the same march home.

Then she gets back on her knees
And prays to God for forgiveness.
Because she doesn't need the Pope
To tell her she can sin.

Copyright ©2009 by Alyson Kissner