Inspired by Acts 10
The high noon sun, tabernacled in Orion, blazes across the sky off the coast of Joppa. In his sleep, the offshore breeze feels like a holy wind. It blows through celestial clouds; the visitation of its breath falls upon the vessel dropping from heaven, its white sheet unfurling yard by yard. Sail on. Sail on across the Eridanus, he whispers to himself.
Salt water sprays with every whoosh of wind. And leaning over gunwhales are giraffes and elephants, lions and baboons, a flock of ostriches all heralding their song, a hymn of praise, as if prayers in a temple.
He sees himself at the laver, cleaning his hands before awakening.
Author’s note: When literary devices used in the Biblical passage are considered (like synecdoche), it is reasonable to imagine that Peter dreamt of a sailing vessel full of animals—a relevant allusion to Noah’s ark, a ship of salvation.
John C. Mannone
Editor's Note: The imagery in Acts 10 inspired the author to write this poem. In turn, the poem inspired him to create this collage to accompany the writing.
John C. Mannone has work in Blue Fifth Review, New England Journal of Medicine, Peacock Journal, Plough, Windhover, Gyroscope Review, Baltimore Review, Pedestal, Pirene's Fountain, Poetica Magazine and others. He’s the winner of the 2017 Jean Ritchie Fellowship in Appalachian literature and the recipient of two Weymouth writing residencies. He has three poetry collections: Apocalypse (Alban Lake Publishing), nominated for the 2017 Elgin Book Award; Disabled Monsters (The Linnet’s Wings Press) featured at the 2016 Southern Festival of Books; and Flux Lines (Celtic Cat Publishing). He’s been awarded two Joy Margrave Awards for Nonfiction and nominated for several Pushcart, Rhysling, and Best of the Net awards. He edits poetry for Abyss & Apex and other venues. He’s professor of physics near Knoxville, TN. http://jcmannone.wordpress.com
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