Wednesday, August 31, 2011

An agnostic's letter to a lost god

One of my cousins sent me a request for a letter to someone I had lost, a letter that I would like to send to someone on the other side.

Its for a project she is working on and it was such an interesting idea. I found myself thinking about my childhood today... This is what I wrote, and while I am not sure I will send it to her, I do want to post it here.  

Dear Padre Celestial,

I thought about you today as I walked through the butterfly garden at school, my students’ vibrant voices bidding me my hasta luegos and adioses as I left them at the doors, blowing kisses at them, and catching a few that they blew back at me.

That saturating heat that I have only ever felt here in Louisiana was clinging to me and seemed to lower the sound of the world around me.  I looked up at the sky and the fat low hanging clouds. I was almost certain that if I would, I could reach up with my finger and poke them.


Humidity that would bring anyone to their knees.

Kisses blown to clouds.

Do you remember when I was a little girl and my grandmother’s house was much bigger? I would walk out the door each morning down 1, 2, 3 crumbling cement steps and blow 1, 2, 3 kisses up to you in the sky.

That was when the sky was bigger too.

I’d skip off up the drive way past my oak trees, with my skinned knees, and blow a kiss.

I’d pass the house with the angry gray haired man and his expansive rock garden and… kiss… Not just to you but one to him too as he watched from his green metal chair.

I’d hop over the pavement cracks and go around the corner by Scott’s Store with its candy bins and the jingle bell on the door and blow another one.

Up to the solemn doors of my tired elementary school, the one that my dad went to when he was a kid too, and before the great doors could creak themselves all the way closed a final kiss to the clouds.

Today, with fading adioses in my ears and freshly blown kisses in my pockets I found a pit in my stomach and a longing for childhood rituals.

At some point I lost you and have not been able to find you or even to kneel in years. I don’t honestly know if you are sitting on clouds and catching kisses from kids sending you love up in the sky but in that silent moment the world paused today and I wished. I wished with all my heart… Grown-up me, standing in front of another tired school, half a world away from my childhood, I suspended reason for just a second and found my arm arching up to the faded Louisiana sky remembering old rituals and blowing a kiss and a sweet memory up to heaven.




  1. This is lovely and heart-breaking and wonderful.

  2. Wow, this is beautiful. Thank you for posting it.

  3. Love how nice, plain and simple it is.

  4. This touched me deeply, thank you.

  5. Beautiful. Thank you for sharing.


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