I have that dream again where the Elders
stand mute in their suits and ties.
They circle around
and place their hands on my head. They push me
into the earth, into the slatted box
that is waiting. A secret box
filled with bees. Now a host, I gag
on buzz and clack. The box bobs up
in the waters of a baptismal font
mounted on the backs of twelve oxen. The bees
have sealed us inside with wax.
I try to ask for some music
at the end of the world, but my mouth
fills with swarm. Then I hear
the Elders singing
“Know This, That Every Soul
is Free,” while I am stung
the purple of reverent hearts.
Christina Stoddard’s poems have appeared in various journals including DIAGRAM, Spoon River Poetry Review, and Slipstream. Originally from Washington State, Christina currently lives in Nashville, TN where she is the Managing Editor of a scholarly journal in economics. She is also a Contributing Editor at Cave Wall. www.christinastoddard.com