he was my religion
where no god could exist
laid slain in his spirit
each time his hands pray upon me
words baptized in tongues tithed
offered in remembrance of we

he was my religion
where no god could exist
took his bread
drank his wine
‘til I don’t remember mine
‘til I don’t remember mine

he was my religion
but he don’t believe
Lord, who gon’ pray for me
bend and break for me
worship me—when love don’t love me?


Michael L. Counter, Jr., is a poet, US Air Force vet, and doctoral candidate at Southern Methodist University in Dallas, Texas, where his research looks at the intersections of race and gender performance in contemporary visual arts and pop culture media. As a black queer yoga teacher and modern dancer, he teaches body positivity workshops and gives talks on the role and importance of self care in activism and community work. Follow Michael @writeyogalove on Twitter and Instagram.

Vagabond City Literary Journal

Founded in 2013, we are a literary journal dedicated to publishing outsider literature. We publish art, poetry, and creative nonfiction from marginalized creators.

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