Wednesday, August 09, 2006

The Wrath of An Angry God....

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Tonight crossed the line. I've had some strange shit happen to me, some things that even make me wonder what the hell is going on, but tonight was something that has scared the shit out of me in a way that I just can't explain.

If you've read any of my other things, you understand my well documented problems with God and religion. Half of it is the philosophical argument that man has had since he first came up with the idea for a god, and the other half is my own selfish anger about how God, if he exists, tends to kill people I love indiscrimately. Either way, we've had issues in the past. I've gotten too drunk, too drunk to remember, and sworn him off, cursed him up and down.

Fuck God. Fuck him.

The day I looked out over the second casket, and watched it slowly drop into the ground, is the day I stopped giving a shit. But then, I am a Catholic. So I never really stop giving a shit, and that goddamn Church is the thing that binds me to that ridiculous faith in a way little else can. The grounds are sacred to me. They bring back old memories, so old that I wonder if they ever happened, or if I made them up in one of my drunken delusions to lull myself into thinking that I was once happy, and not the rage filled blasphemous lout that I am now. I remember warm days, getting out of Church into the bright light of the sun, and seeing my grandfather bullshitting with the Monsieur outside in the garden that the old priest worked so hard to maintain. It swelled that old man's chest to see how beautiful those grounds remained, and that his garden never, ever fell into disrepair.

Both of them are dead now. My grandfather died years ago on Halloween from an unseen weakness, and the course of my life was forever altered. In the old priest, pride was not the only thing that swelled in his breast... cancer grew there also. He was dead soon after.

That garden was never beautiful again. The plants were no longer a deep green- sides began to brown and die off. Bricks twisted up from the ground, broke, and did not get replaced. Weeds grew through the cracks, and though they try, the original beauty can never be reclaimed.

I still go there, though, on dark cold nights, and get on my knees in front of the statue of the Virgin Mary, and say the rosary. Sometimes I am sober, sometimes not. Sometimes I'm enraged, sometimes breaking down, always a mess. It helps me though, it's as close to therapy as I'll ever get. It makes me think that all that shit is real, and that the dogma and the bullshit and the crosses and the pomp and ritual actually means that this crap life isn't all that we've got.

Tonight was different though. I may have crossed the line in the last couple years, because God, if he's there, is fucking pissed.

The feeling I had in that garden when I stumbled in there tonight for solace was one of anger, of rage; not on my part, mind you- on His. As I said the rosary under the streetlights, a chill ran up my back, up and down. I looked around, expecting someone to be there. There was not.

I walked around, having my conversation with the dead that I normally have, but it was all wrong. That knife being dragged down my back was still there, and the hairs on the back of my neck stood at attention. The cross was lit oddly, illuminated more than I remember it- a show of strength no doubt from the man who runs the universe (yes ladies, its a man- don't kid yourselves).

A low whisper then came from the bushes. It may have been a metaphorical whisper, such as when squirrels tread lightly through old leaves, but it sounded like a human one to me. The words were those that I could not understand...but they were damning. They were angry, the tone was harsh and low, and they wanted me out. It was a low scream, an attack on this unholy man who has stepped foot on this hallowed ground, this house of God. It got cold.

I said the Hail Mary aloud, and proclaimed that this was my fucking garden, and that the bodies that had lain in that Church were those of all my family. I would not fucking leave.

The whispers ceased as suddenly as they began, but the sound haunts me still. I was not welcome there. I am not welcome there. I, the ignorant kid who thought he could curse God and have no retribution, I've been shown the door in God's House.

Not like it matters I guess. I've left that House alone for so long, it's a wonder I remember how to get there. Images flash through my mind like a black and white newsreel, like the scenes in the Ferrari in Rocky IV as "No Easy Way Out" plays over the top. The shining gray casket, the door on the hearse slamming, the cold face and a dozen roses falling into the hole that was dug the same day, the drunken nights wailing in the streets....

Fuck God. Kill Jesus.

I don't mean that.


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rebeleyeball said...

Dude, are you my cousin or something? Are ya Irish, too?

J said...

Ironically, yea, I am Irish. Though I don't look it, people tell me that my writing and attitude reflect it pretty heavily.

We're a proud, fucked up people indeed ;)

dotbar said...

What I see is someone who is stripped bare of pretention and is revealing himself in all honesty. Which do you think God appreciates more, a self-righteous pretentious holierthanthou churchgoer or the guy who drops to his knees in the garden and bares his soul in all its grief, pain, rage and confusion? Do you really think you've crossed the line with God? I don't think so. God is not some prissy weak sissy who can't take a man to man(well actually, man to God but let's not get into that now..) conversation. Maybe you need to rethink your perception of God. What you felt in that garden was not God. If you really want to know God and be accepted by Him, keep looking and you'll get there.

Anonymous said...

You think like every Catholic I know, well at least the way I've been raised to think about God, religion. I may be a woman, but I agree He's a man. If he wasn't thought of as a man, there would be no following. Early societies as well as today would never follow a female god, unless the society is matriarical to begin with. Those societies believe in more than one god anyway, so what difference does it make? It's believed all over that a woman can't do it on her own. I may not like it, but that's the way it is.
As for your rosary visits, you're a better Catholic than I. If I try I can't only get through one decade, before I lose focus. I find it interesting that although most of your writing is about the working man and strength, a real man's world - you choose to pray to Mary. If not to her, through her. God puts us through some pretty fucked up shit, we got a count on ourselves most of the time. I've pulled strength from myself, when my trust in God failed. Most of the time, all we have is ourselves- alone. That's what catholic school taught me.