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It's 9 am Sunday, a Poem by Jeff William Acosta

Updated: Feb 6, 2022

Written by Jeff William Acosta


It's 9 am Sunday. Another day I am forced to wake

up while I'm in the process of drowning my body

in the waters inside my head

when everyone is sleeping, along with half the verses

I mutter every single night

before Amen.

About time to leave the sheets & the bed

where I begged not to hear my parents singing:

"God is great, and God is good

and we thank you for the food".

—it annoys the rebel residing,

& I hope God forgets

me that He'd write nothing in the pages of my sins.


I wouldn't say that I like praying,

but it somehow calms me like a mantra

or a battle cry before the slaughtering

of "coward" Indios in my pagan ancestors' rice fields.

Those Spanish priests probably made a list

not of their names or body counts

nor souls they'll include in their prayers

but these lands to be sliced and served like cakes

among themselves.

"Let's bow our heads, close our eyes

and pray to the Lord", Pastor Paul said,

& I do, I always do like a dog worshipper

but before that, I peak at how others do it

—my subtle cheating,

& I hope God doesn't mind,

that He'd write nothing of how I half-closed my eyes.


Today, in front, someone I know is preaching.

I am frightened. I fear what he'll say.

He might know. His words are Your words.

Calling out the sinner who knows his sins

—the worst kind of sinner.

I tried not to meet his eyes

—my secret protest, but it's deafening,

& my thick skin crumbles to every word

that comes out from his mouth. So, I stared

at the fishing-boat instead

& I wished for it to be swallowed

not by the ocean but a whale,

& I don't know what I was thinking

but it stayed still, not even flinching

at the sun's punishment, staying adrift,

"Suffering is real. We are called to recognize it,

not to deny it. God never wanted us to suffer.

Our sufferings are direct and indirect consequences of

our fallen humanity. Suffering is real, but God is"

navigating the coveys of waves.

Note: The last italicized words are taken from my best friend's sermon.


Jeff William Acosta is a Filipino poet from Ilocos Sur, Philippines. His works have appeared in Vox Populi, Revolt Magazine, Lumiere Review, and others. Find him at


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