by John Hoppenthaler

She stares at the lineup of men
who all look like Jesus
and finally points out the one
who most resembles Him,
swarthy and bearded,
a lot like Cat Stevens,
so angelic she wants to kiss Him
like a lover on the lips.
He is the only one who seems
at ease. Should He wink at her,
it would mean more than conspiracy;
it would mean that she’d gone beyond
the call of duty to finger Jesus
for his crimes and to love Him
just the same.

JOHN HOPPENTHALER’s poetry has appeared in Ploughshares, Virginia Quarterly Review, McSweeney’s, Southern Review, Christian Science Monitor, Barrow Street, The Laurel Review, Copper Nickel, Blackbird, and Subtropics, and in many other publications. His essays, interviews, and essay/reviews appear in such journals as Arts & Letters, Southeast Review, Chelsea, Bellingham Review, Pleiades, The Greenwood Encyclopedia of American Poetry, North Carolina Literature, Cortland Review, and Kestrel, where he is served as Poetry Editor for eleven years. He currently edits A Poetry Congeries at Connotation Press: An Online Artifact. He is the author of two books of poetry, Lives of Water and Anticipate the Coming Reservoir, both from Carnegie Mellon University Press.