The Devotional Poems


The Devotional Poems


by Joe Hall
Paperback / 80p. / Poetry
ISBN 978-1-9395680-1-4

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Joe Hall is a devout poet. He is devoted to trailer parks, the drafty inner spaces of domesticity where we cry out for our lady help. He finds god, saints, saviors, in spiders in a woodpile. For Hall, poetry cannot hold anything if it doesn’t break. Here, god is amputated from the ground, and the ground is opening its devouring mouth. The Devotional Poems is a prayer—a prayer by evangelical AM radio, oxycodone addiction, white pines, and the death of everything the body knows through sickness. A prayer written while walking along a state road and down into a ravine day after day. These poems ask to be your sustaining and poisonous vegetation. Pay your devotion here.

Cover adapted from the drawing Awake, Sleeper by Alyssa Pheobus Mumtaz

Our Lady of Supreme Happiness

In the theater my silver wrists divide into almond tree
branches. They flower. I leave, I can’t remember
the movie. When I begin praying to you
Mary, you are an icon carved
from a yellow tusk, you become
a horn thickened by milk, then a garlic clove
When I finish praying
you are still here, a flame
ranging roof to roof, the scent
of burning almonds blossoms. To live
is to borrow, and if we borrow
to live, then all life must be
a heap of trash, so rejoice