Alex Dimitrov

The Crucifix

It hung from his neck in a kind and devastating way—

hidden under his shirt and apron, wait staff uniform

then blazer, when he finally found a good desk job.

 

Walking through the living room after work

he’d slowly loosen the knot of his tie, teasing it

with his fingers and unbuttoning that top button

 

every man must hate so much.

From there it took him only seconds

until the cotton trailed behind his back,

 

shirt fully undone, allowing me to notice

the tense drops of sweat which ran down from his armpits,

the stains forming delicate rings around his sleeves.

 

And when he sat down on the couch

to rest his head back, Adam’s apple

sharply gleaming, palms left open on his thighs––

 

I’d stare at that gold crucifix which sank so low,

our Jesus buried deep inside his chest hair,

closer to my father than I ever got

 

and claiming the best part.

 


"The Crucifix" first appeared in Harpur Palate, Volume 8.2, Winter 2009.