The day Christ died a record-long freight train
barreled through the Rollins Road crossing.
For seven minutes tankers and lumber flats
vibrated through the spikes in his wrists.
A fisherman dropped his pole by the retention pond
and headed toward the hill. A girl at a bus stop
clutched her side as the embryo implanted himself.
We’ll be late for the movie, I said.
That night, a meteor lit a tongue of fire
over the Midwestern sky. Our kitchen flashed,
and you froze at the sink. Christ was just born,
you said. I ground my best coffee as an offering
and kept watch through the night. Legion roared
through the maple leaves. The Pharisees’ stones
thudded to the ground. The loaves in the kitchen
ruptured their bags, then the earth burst into being.
The Image archive is supported in part by an award from the National Endowment for the Arts.