Creative Writing*



The young theologian

felt cramped in class

while the five-star professor

force-fed artificial formats

to the hungry neophytes.


His syllogistic dogmatics

lost convincing traction

in their short-story shoes.

The one-act play diluted

all traces of his orthodoxy.


But then he sprung the sacraments

inside a Hopkins rhythm

and dactylic footprints sprayed

sparks of grace across the page.

In one prelapsarian flash


he woke awash in wonder.



Jerome L. McElroy



*Accepted in Penwood Review (Fall 2007).