Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Naomi's Atomic Angels

I read this poem yesterday on a break from reading these three books.

I think it's clever, poignant and strangely appropriate to my current reading. It's by Naomi, whose MySpace is here.

Atomic Angels

When I was four

I asked my mother

"Where's God?"

"He's under the chair,"

she said, 

So I lifted the cushion

and in the darkness

I saw.

Years later

I'm full
not empty.

If you ask me 
where to find God

I tell you

"under the chair"

I believe in no God

but feel that if there is one,

It must be everywhere.

I see oaks, 
churches of canopied ceilings,

green fresco
es to make Old Masters weep.

Altars of basalt
, cemented with clay,

Bricks, mortar...

all quiver with the song 
of atomic angels.

Daily bread
 is coloured tartrazine,

divine blood makes
 plastic bottles

labelled River Rock.

Relics like rosaries,

fashionable reverbations
of moonstone 
or common nickel

real holy artefacts

hewn from spirituality itself:

Read a Bible in the cerulean sky
or pensive clouds
of precognitive meteorological forecasts.
Tears litter the inky sky,
blinking eyes of satellites.

Blessed crosses 
map paths and junctions

life trails of humans
offer salvation
the whole world wide is your Friends List.

As for Darkness,

don't worry.

If there was God
It would live in
 black holes,

Under The Chair.

You bring the light

lifting the cushions

looking for answers.

Discussing it with me, Naomi wrote "... everything we touch, see and do is miraculous, even the clear plastic of a bottle that was refined from crude oil which was once carbon and biodegraded matter... if we are our own gods by creating miracles through science, those atoms are the spinning angels."

In many ways she's right. We have come so far, especially in Irish society, having been ruled by literal interpretation of the written word of those who used the figure of Jesus for their own power and dominance. We have far more power than ever before.

Yet, with all the scientific breakthroughs, the experiments, the advances and the progress, we still are reliant on things like love, a hug, a friend's company, a smile. The poem echoes my belief - God is where you look for God. Seek and you shall find.


  1. Very nice. I love the ideas and sentiments behind this. The reliance on a 'God' character is still not something I can subscribe to, but I like the idea that there might be a greater force all around us.

  2. Not a God reliance Darren: the whole point is that the Earth we live in is miraculous and our religion should be an awareness of the fantastic state of nature that gave us life.

    Glad you liked it though :)