When I imagine my Church,
the old one,
the one I would sneak off to at odd hours of the night and pray to anything,
the one I left behind,
I imagine the garden fountain completely still.
Rusted over in copper waters, submerging everything I whispered to it.
No faithful children splashing at the edge,
or disapproving mothers laughing off any bitterness.
Just absolute silence.
I assume that because I ceased to exist those few miles away,
life has to too.
The dryness in the air musters up a tear,
and a lonely hummingbird drifts into frame.
I don't know her name, but she's there.
Sipping from the dreary fountainhead,
unbothered by the lifeless sense to it.
And right when her iridescent body turns to me,
My eyes are forced shut by the sheer power of human anatomy.
The dryness makes its way to my chest.
Selfish, selfish, selfish.
It's natural to want my absence to cause a crater in the hearts of strangers.
It's natural to beg my old God to make them feel what I’ve felt.
But not the hummingbirds, let them gather at the water's edge, and for their chests to be everything but dry, take away the rust, and let the hummingbirds feel what I left behind.
Kate Jeffers is a sophomore from SoCal and loves writing, reading, and anything involving words. She has been published in WriteGirls’ Lines and Breaks, and has received awards from the National Poet Laureate Association and Scholastic Writers Association.