In Defense

by | Jun 26, 2012 | Poetry

“How incredible… we [are] blessed to even have this surgery that we have. We’re so advanced. If Cleopatra were alive now, I’m sure she’d have triple D’s.” –Heidi Montag


The image is what we want

to destroy, not God. God can stay

in the forms we like:

in mega churches, in the 22 karat cross

at our necks, in the prayers for prosperity

whispered between our plumped lips.


The image itself is past its prime.

Useful, maybe, in biblical times,

when we needed certain things

to be sturdy: hips, hands, chests.

When we needed to tell danger

by our faces.  When we slept

in tents, and died young.


The image is useless to us now,

and what we are is unsuited

to this present life, to this current face.

We are not on watch at the city walls; we are not bent

at the waist to bring up the harvest.

The image is ours to make and remake—

this is our new right; and we are still God’s own,


though we come, some say, unrecognizable

to his gate.







Photo by Andy Hares on Flickr

About The Author

Prairie L. Markussen

Prairie L. Markussen lives and writes in Chicago currently, though she’s lived and written all over the place. She has been published in some cool places, including Painted Bride Quarterly, The Fiddlehead, Louisiana Literature, and in an anthology of short poems called Bigger Than They Appear published by Accents Publishing.