Post and Beam – James D Sullivan

James D Sullivan

Guy’s a lawyer now. He sat
across the table from me—
high school cafeteria, 1975. “What

would you do,” perking from his plastic-
wrapped lunch, “if God said, ‘Whatever
you want to do, no rules’?” by which

he meant hellfire, pitchforks, then,
“I’d kill somebody,” and happily
sucked his milk.
Conversational gambit,

ethico-legal speculation, idish wrath
poking through the zipper of morality:
whatever it was, I felt

all reverence bleach out of me.
It took years.
Larry, I’d lend you
my pen or notes for your own sake, buddy,

not to please some god. If I pluck a mote
from my neighbor’s eye, I do it
to ease his eyestrain, and I, if

you don’t mind, could use some help
with this beam in my own. It’s really annoying.

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