Jesus is waiting in Heaven for me

when I die, Miss Hooker at Sunday School

says. So I’d better watch it, my sinning,

so much so that I never sin again

or else when I get up there He’ll toss me

in the Lake of Everlasting Fire, or

He’ll have an angel do it. I’d rather


Jesus do it Himself – I’d like to touch

Him, the hem of His garment. It’s funny

that that wouldn’t cure my problem enough

to save my soul at the last second but

down here I could have cancer and it would

heal me, His touch I mean. I don’t want to


die but Miss Hooker says I’ve got no choice

in the matter, the best I can do is

prepare for which plave I want to go – it’s

easier to go to Hell, I think, all

I have to do is what I do now, sin,

but getting into Heaven means hard work

and I’ve already flunked the third grade once

and I’m working on it again even

though I’m not working on it at all, I’m

a natural, I guess. So I’ve got to


stop cheating on tests and talking back to my

folks and forgetting to feed the damn cat

and start cleaning up my room and piling

up my comic books in a neat stack and

all the other stuff Jesus will remind

me about when my body dies and my

soul’s standing naked, I guess naked, in

front of Him. If I get the chance I’ll ask


Him why if He died for my sins do I

have to burn in Hell for them all the same.

I’d better think now about His reply,

what He might say, so that I can get ready

with a comeback and then another good

enough to keep Him talking and buy

me some time. Maybe I can wear Him out


and He’ll let me int Heaven to stay

just to be rid of me and still be nice.

I guess that then I’ll really be on fire.

Gale Acuff

About Ijagun Poetry Journal

Ijagun Poetry Journal is a quarterly journal that provides a platform from which we can tell our own stories in the authenticity of their multiplicity through the poetic medium. We don’t want to hear these stories from our master “griots” alone; we want to hear from those mastering their art, too. Hence, we aim at publishing new and emerging poets. We also welcome the works of established poets in order to encourage the poetic genius of those mastering poetic art. We prize original works that conform to, break or reinvent conventions. Again, we accept reviews and critical essays on poetry. We also accept powerful art works and photographs that make us appreciate the "poetry" in everything.
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