Two Poems by David S. Higdon
The day Dad reclaimed his faith he brought
home a ceramic cross to hang on the wall,
two-dollar sticker stuck on its base
and crude initials scrawled in the back.
The wood was painted a patchy acrylic,
a brown too dark for the wood of a cross,
maybe a railroad tie or a jungle vine,
but not the wood cut by a Cross Maker.
My father watched men beat each other
on TV in our dim lit living room.
Under that cross, I’d watch the boxers
lock up, wrap long arms over shoulders,
slick with sweat, a cut over a swelled eye,
the bell signals the end of a round, retreat
to corners, sucking the air, spitting teeth
into a metal bucket. The ring girl would circle,
a bold number held high. Eyes and howls
from the smoky dark. Bloodstains
and dirt, and Jesus staring down.