by Katie Manning

 

The Book of Sex

all that remains of Exodus

it will be holy
it will be most holy

everything
set up

placed
and set out

placed
and set up

placed
and burned

put up
and offered

placed
between
water
and
washed whenever

lifted from above

set up
and put up
and so
finished

 

The Book of Mean

all that remains of Nehemiah

the book
was read aloud in the
ear
of the people and
of God

they had not met

the people
were
foreign
and
large
used to
wine and olive oil
musicians and
priests

God
was greatly displeased and threw all
the musicians
at
posts

God
saw people
in fish and
pulled out their hair

and God
even he was
foreign

 

The Book of Jam

all that remains of Jeremiah

his mother’s name was
daughter

she was
all
anger
in the end

twenty-one years old when he became king
he reigned
eleven years

in the ninth year
on the tenth day of the tenth month
until the eleventh year of
the ninth day of the fourth month
there was no food

the king
set fire to
the poorest people
and all the
dishes

the LORD
was four fingers thick
and hollow
decorated with
pomegranates of bronze

the
king
spoke kindly
of the LORD
and
ate regularly
till the day of his death


KATIE MANNING is the founding Editor-in-Chief of Whale Road Review and an Associate Professor of Writing at Point Loma Nazarene University in San Diego. Her full-length poetry collection, Tasty Other, is the 2016 winner of the Main Street Rag Poetry Book Award. Find her at www.katiemanningpoet.com.


Photo: “Grandma’s Bible” by Andrew Seaman