Waiting for God

by Erica K. Miller

under a blanket of city lights
staining the sky with hues of orange
and white obscuring the piercing
flicker of stars
lying heavier on our backs
than our whiskey-sweat-soaked
t-shirts clinging to the skin of our bodies—
we stumbled through the door
to the counter of a dark
red lit room smelling
of ash and stale beer covering
the aroma of a thousand nights of vomit-
soaked upholstery,
sitting at the bar staring
into the flame we used to light
cigarettes until the matches burned
down to the tips of our fingers leaving
a pulsating sensation
of pain under the skin
with dirty fingernails scraping
labels off damp bottles—
never drinking the beer from its
lipstick-stained glass,
clasping our hands, pressing
our palms, hanging
our heads like Catholics
at a pew of bar stools
as if we were some kind of
alcoholic apostles
praying, waiting
for god.

Erica K. Miller resides on the Gulf Coast and teaches college writing and literature. Her writing seeks to illuminate the trepidations that accompany the political and social atmosphere of the twenty-first century and endeavors to communicate the complex emotional experiences of alcoholism, addiction, and mental illness. She is the former editor-in-chief of Feminist Spaces and is currently working on her first collection of poetry.

Photo by: Ana Prundaru