A Prayer for Pennsylvania, by Marissa Glover

Jesus said, “If anyone causes one of these little ones—those who believe in me—to stumble, it would be better for them to have a large millstone hung around their neck and to be drowned in the depths of the sea” (Matthew 18:6).


Our Father, who art in heaven,
hallowed be the nameless & unnamed
Give us this day our daily news—
decades of abusers now accused
Deliver us from evil

I do not forgive priests who hurt little children

No matter how much they confess
or kneel or swish with holy water
No matter how many catechisms
or pilgrimages or prayers to the Virgin

I do not forgive pedophiles
or those who look the other way

They can drink the communion cup
until their bladder fills, explodes the prostate—
stuff their mouth with wafers, white as chastity

They can choke on this spotless body
rendered for them, offered for healing
of sickness and removal of sins

May they aspirate halfway through
their Forgive me, Father, for I have sinned
both the confessor and the falsely penitent

Then let them burn
Let them burn



This poem was first published at Poetry 24 in August 2018.

Marissa Glover teaches and writes in central Florida, where she spends most of her time sweating. Her poetry has appeared in UK journals such as AmaryllisPicaroon PoetrySolstice SoundsPoetry24Bonnie’s CrewClear Poetry, I Am Not a Silent Poet, and Ink, Sweat & Tears. Follow her on Twitter @_MarissaGlover_.

After My twelve year old Asked Me to Tell Him What I Thought About the School Shooting in Parkland, Florida—in Four Words PLEASE—he added, to avoid hearing a dissertation on the subject and because he had homework to do before class, by Marissa Glover

Gun control would help,
so would mental health—
it’s a mad world.

America is not Australia:
Australia is an island;
Mara crosses our borders.

Criminals break the law;
evil finds a way—
a knife killed thirty.

Children should be sacred;
one is too many—
I support #NeverAgain.

Our nation is sick—
we’re addicted to anger;
blame’s easier than change.

We all need Jesus.
Even you and me.
We cannot save ourselves.

Stay safe, son. Please.


Marissa Glover teaches and writes in Florida and shares her thoughts more than necessary, which she considers a form of charitable giving. If it counted as a tax deduction, she’d be rich. Her work is found or forthcoming in After the PauseAmaryllisClear PoetrySolstice Sounds, and other journals. Read more at MarissaGlover.wordpress.com and follow her on Twitter.

Bang Bang There Goes Your Heart by Marissa Glover

After we post Instagram pics:                       ample booty

red lips                       round faces     these happy pouts

out with our besties—


after we subtweet lyrics to our ex: #badforwomen

so everyone knows the song is about him,


we wish now for one more night,

for someone new to take the stage, someone

to sing the world’s broken hallelujah whole again.