The Cello String to God
In the evening, I kneel by the mattress covered in vinyl,
clean yellow sheets and a cream colored comforter,
and pray pray
plead for the girls in Africa who walk
barefoot while flies buzz around their eyes
bellies bulging, ribs sticking out,
palms calloused from
the handles of their water buckets.
How can I ask for anything with a mouth
that’s never tasted thirst, with soft hands that only
carry pens and books and calculators,
my belly full of pot roast, my knees
clean of scrapes, the top of my white feet
sinking into the shaggy rug?
The air around me thickens, congealing like my mother’s gravy,
and I picture an ascending line, silver
with small black notches, tight like a cello string
leading up to heaven, spinning with the vibration of
my pleading voice
thin and small as the blond hairs on my arm.
“Please, God, make me smart tomorrow; I do not want
my teacher to be angry.”
Angela Felsted is a musician, poet, and nature lover. Her work has appeared in issue fifteen of Drown in Your Own Fears, in Chantarelle’s Notebook, and on her blog. Her chapbooks, CLEAVE and Scarred were published in 2012. You can visit her at www.angelafelsted.com