A Preacher-Girl I Was

by L. Teresa Church

Neither called, nor sent,

the kind that just went

hat and hymnal in hand,


my make-believe pulpit

a chair, porch rail,

bedroom dresser top,


anywhere Gran sat,

listened to sing-song

sermons I preached


over dead frogs, mice,

grasshoppers, houseflies,

some killed by me,


just so I could lead

dusty evening marches

for souls laid to rest


in pickle jars, under weeds,

wild roses, daisies, dandelions

that topped their red-clay tombs


gouged into slope bank

along the road that lead

me to other callings.