Though I have not shined shoes for it,
Have not suffocated myself handsome
In a tight, bright tie, Sunday comes
Again to me as it did in childhood.
We few left who listen to the radio leave
Ourselves available to surprise. We pray
Unaware of prayer. We are an ugly people.
Forgive me, I do not wish to sing
Like Tramaine Hawkins, but Lord if I could
Become the note she belts halfway into
The fifth minute of "The Potter's House"
When black vocabulary heralds home-
Made belief: For any kind of havoc, there is
Deliverance! She means that even after I am
Not listening. I am not a saint
Because I keep trying to be a sound, something
You will remember
Once you’ve lived enough not to believe in heaven.