Dear God, What's Beyond These Mountains?
poetry by Bethany Jarmul

Pastor preaches that you have a plan 
for my 14-year-old life. 

Can you send it FedEx or 

What’s beyond these cracked 
sidewalks and dreams crumpled 

like left-behind clothes 
post-rapture? Am I to wear 

the black dust that settled 
on my grandparents’ graves?

Can my ancestors’ sweat 
be a soup that fills my belly,

fuels the stirring in my soul?
Is home a place around me 

or a place inside me? What if 
I don’t like the path you’ve carved 

for me, God? What if Pastor
is wrong?

Born and raised in West Virginia, Bethany Jarmul is a writer, editor, and poet. Her work has appeared in more than 50 literary magazines and been nominated for Best of the Net and Best Spiritual Literature. She lives near Pittsburgh with her family. Find her online @BethanyJarmul.

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