i quit praying because
prayer represented a lack of self-reliance,
a neediness,
an inability to take care of my self and my own.

i quit praying because
i was told how to pray
and when to pray
and where to pray.

i quit praying because
i wanted to do it myself
in my own way
to my own spirit of surprises
with my eyes wide open.

well, guess what: i’ve taken up prayer again.

and even though my prayers may not
look like yours
or sound like yours
or be directed to the same god or direction as yours,
they are still prayers.

my prayers.

and on any given day
they sound like laughter
and feel like slow cloth
and taste like mom’s cubed steak
and smell like gardenias
and look like this:

prayers.jpg

because sometimes
prayers deserve pretty paper
and to be written in blood
and sealed with a big, fat, juicy kiss.