The Confessional Poet


It took two dead women to lead me back to God one a saint, the other a sinner. God loves them both. I didn’t think I needed them, but I did, I’m just being honest.

Strangely enough, one met her fate in the gas chambers at Auschwitz, the other by self-inflicted carbon monoxide poisoning. Is either one of them considered higher above the other? No, not at all. Especially when both have led you straight to Jesus.

When your dreams fade away because the devil is a liar, there is only tragedy. Even though you know God is there listening, even when you ingest Him.

Depression is a mighty swallowing evil, tempting fate, and the deliverance you may have already experienced. It is the creeping death at your door, an unwanted friend, your greatest torturer that you hold onto for dear life. 

On my journey home, it took a dead woman to revive me. She was more alive to me then some of the corpses walking through churches. She understood my plight in a way others didn’t. She showed me how to swallow God, which brought me to my knees of an altar at Adoration.

It’s been a year of this leg of the journey. I am now a formalized Catholic. I have been baptized, ingested the Lord and become confirmed in the Holy Spirit. I was called to feed the flock through my hands that are utterly unworthy. My husband told me Sunday that he was ready for conversion himself, baptized but not yet a part of the church. I fell to my knees in painful thankfulness. It has been a year of disunity. I am in, he was out. Then he was in. Then the Blessed Mother brought Him all in. And He is all in. So the devil decided to invade my space.

It has been a week of upheaval; great spiritual ruckus. Only God can undo that. I have begged on my knees, tried to read my way out of it. No luck. A rosary or two prayed fervently, prayers for the Blessed Mother’s intercession, fasting and confession. But the days remained dark, and I vowed to stay in my closet until the demon fled. 

I started with a Dave Matthews listening, he is hurting, and it’s good to listen to something raw and true. The tears could not stop, and I refused to stop them. Jesus over me. I prayed, “God help me” one million and four times.

Then to find Gray Street, what a sad, sad song. It’s gotta be about somebody, for somebody. And it was. And it led me to the second dead person to knock on my door, Anne Sexton. What a horribly tragic life, but the words of the priest struck me, “God is in your typewriter.”

And it occurred to me that I was denying the very gift that bit and ached at my soul. The journey is sometimes so rancid. I hate sharing the ugly stuff. But her pain was inspiring, because it was my pain too. 

I didn’t want to be in that pit, I could see it from the no-name words on Wikipedia- they were so generically tragic. That’s it? She put on a fur coat, poured a glass of vodka and left the world in a gas-filled car. It pained me. It pained me so much it woke me up from where I was, and changed my direction.

If I have to write naked to please God I will, because I am sick and tired of realizing I am naked. I have friends out here and in there.I have always struggled with being me, and wrestled with God because of it.

But I’m going to listen to the words of that very wise Priest, the keystrokes as confessional.

4 thoughts on “The Confessional Poet

  1. Good stuff Melissa! It’s been weird/odd/ironic how I’ve found God in the most unlikely of places, stories, people, events. “God, I didn’t know you would be here of all places.” To which, he responds, “I AM.” He is where ever there is an is; it’s one of those things I’ve learned “outside” the church, yet still inside where I’ve often believed the church is not.

    When I look back, I see a great deal of beauty in the journey, even though it wasn’t “fun” at the time. Oddly, I wouldn’t change a thing though, because ultimately those situations brought me to a deeper, more beautiful relationship with God.

    Liked by 2 people

    • I’m coming to the same conclusions. I was so afraid to leave my Christian bubble but realized, like you, that God is in everything, in fact that’s what my reading today was about. When we can find him everywhere we really become free!

      Liked by 2 people

  2. So beautiful in the vulnerability and rawness – and I’m so glad you’ve surrendered to the typewriter Spirit in you. It is often His light shines through the thinnest skin of our nakedness. And yes, He is everywhere when we allow our eyes to see.

    Liked by 1 person

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