jdubqca

poetry by j matthew waters

Archive for the category “Dogma”

apocalypse then and now


it’s come to this
mammals dressed in pants
fighting for territory on
principles born in the backwoods
countless centuries before christ

before dungeon and dragons
there was this game called
kill or be killed
and for whatever reason (ever since)
programmers can’t seem to shake the code

only the lowly and the few have witnessed
angels waiting in the wings
some perched atop palm trees
others drifting into the bay
hapless and humming
reluctantly waiting for the end to begin



april two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

burning down the church


the church caught fire
soon after midnight
awakening the entire
sleepy little town

there wasn’t enough
water to extinguish
the insatiate flames climbing
past the steeple
eyewitnessed by those
trickling in from blocks away

one tanker
two tankers
three tankers arrived
sirens screaming for attention
fluorescent wings giving directions

night gave way to dusk
bird calls beginning to be heard
above the dwindling din
the sun resurfacing
exposing the ruins and the
worshipers singing
inside this town
and the next



february two thousand seventeen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

god is in the wine (and the wire)


the light above me starts
humming and pulsating
distractedly
and it was then I realized
some higher power was communicating to me
telling me how there is so much more
to learn about myself

down below in the basement
inside the fuse box
hot wires pass over neutral ones
arcing into obscurity
sending cross currents
to the nearest known light



november two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

cast away


sitting sober on picnic table
made of driftwood
I wonder when in the world
my checkered cloth will arrive

I stare out at the ocean
where an angel without wings
hangs ten while blowing kisses my way

I tell myself she’s just having fun
though I’m sure if she wanted
she could move these continental shelves
much faster to california

last night I built a cathedral out of sand
wherein the choir sang until the rains came

in the morning the beach was new again
and all I could do was pray
to the father and the son
and the ghost of my former self



november two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

messengers of love


there is just the one god
there shall be none of this
three-in-one nonsense
or some other silly notion
for without truly believing in the one
man will never love his brother
what he loves for himself
      while loving thy neighbor
        (as thyself)
remains the most daunting proposition
       (ever put to the test)
for well over two thousand years


august two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

lead us not into temptation


against all odds you are born into
a world that spins relentlessly
flashing both brilliance
and complete darkness

in matter of minutes you acquire
a lifetime of knowledge by visiting
the garden that for centuries
had failed so many

serpent pretends to be your friend
plucking fruit and promising you
a kingdom you cannot see
neither in this world
nor possibly the next

you reach out for a taste
but suddenly pull away
realizing that by giving in
innocence would be destroyed


august two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

center of the universe


I offered silence and I was
chastised by the god of noise

while the god of peace recessed
into a corner dressed in white

sitting on a stool she recounted
neither scripture nor sacrifice

proclaiming no territorial disputes
offering no reasons for forgiveness

all the while peaceful men wage
war in the four corners of the world

disbelieving the looking-glass
located in the center of the universe

reflects a world of possibility


august two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

until we conquer death we will never be able to broker peace


you kill for your god
you rape and maim and murder
all for your god

you carry objects in your pockets
a license to kill the guilty
along with the innocent

your god has made you judge
grand jury and executioner
and deservedly so
for he is a righteous dude
and his prejudices are warranted
even though he oftentimes transmits
disturbing orders
you have no choice but to carry out

all the real estate in the world
belongs to your god
and so you go out and capture
as many flags as you can

no questions asked


august two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

dreaming between the lull and the storm


there is deception in those eyes
seemingly innocent
but exposed
to a lifetime of atrocities

captured by the camera’s lens
they are frozen in time
and streamed live
to a world hopelessly paralyzed

relocated time and again
she hides her eyes and dreams
of the day
living with angels in paradise


may two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

the strange animal from the sea


the dragon gave its power and authority
to the beast with ten horns and seven heads

I saw the beast emerge from the sea
looking much like a leopard
a crown on every horn
an evil name on each head
its feet like bear claws
and its mouth like a lion

though one of its heads had been slain
the beast returned it to life
amazing all who had seen
moving them to worship
not only the dragon but the beast
going as far to say no army on earth
could wage war against them

the beast boasted and bragged
insulting the lord during its 42 month reign
waging war against his people
until it ruled over every tribe
every race of people
every nation and language

and all those living since the beginning
worshiped the beast
those whose names are not
written in the lamb’s book of life
the very lamb who had been killed

I say to all who have witnessed
these things take heed
for whoever is bound to be a prisoner
will be a prisoner
and whoever kills with the sword
shall die by the sword


may two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

Oh thee of little faith


I didn’t come here to be blindsided
punched in the face
and kicked in the gut
all while trying to stand back up

I didn’t come here to starve to death
nor wander god-forsaken lands
once ruled by holy men
who failed so miserably

I didn’t come here to be ridiculed
for my beliefs
whether original thoughts
or inherited by a people struggling
to break free from persecution

I didn’t come here to be dominated
intimidated or bound
detained in a cage
and held for ransom
praying to be redeemed
by my lady of mercy


march two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

preparing for the unknown


he died in Vatican City on vacation
courtesy of a one-way ticket
purchased by an unknown agent

everyone seemed to know him
whether in Hollywood or
Mumbai or Ho Chi Minh City

born to the slums of Lebanon
it was a miracle he ever set sail
beyond the Mediterranean

his most youthful days gave way
to urban sand lots on Saturdays
playing host to cricket or fútbol
or american baseball

without a home there is no heart
especially before going to war
or so he wrote
about being reborn
about taking Waterloo by storm
about stepping out of the theatre
and coming back to earth
for that
once-in-a-lifetime pilgrimage


march two thousand sixteen
copyright j matthew waters
all rights reserved

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