Support First Things by turning your adblocker off or by making a  donation. Thanks!

           Here God
gums up in the mouth,
won’t spit itself out
with every easy expletive,
leaving the discussion free
for disagreement.

to digest than politically correct
sex, shit, or Shades of Grey,
it then tries to slide
down the coarse slope
of the throat,
but won’t.

           Or rather
can’t, catching instead
on the inside of each
a wedge of weighty
popular propositions.

thought-lasher, can’t-believe-you-
believe quasher, eyes as wide as
some size ten foot in a mouth
trying to chew through
the ultimate classroom

while you wonder why
the syllable turns
rancid, Whoever shall
deny me fanatically churning
bile in a belly of half-


Dear Reader,

We launched the First Things 2023 Year-End Campaign to keep articles like the one you just read free of charge to everyone.

Measured in dollars and cents, this doesn't make sense. But consider who is able to read First Things: pastors and priests, college students and professors, young professionals and families. Last year, we had more than three million unique readers on

Informing and inspiring these people is why First Things doesn't only think in terms of dollars and cents. And it's why we urgently need your year-end support.

Will you give today?

Make My Gift