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Losing My Religion

Updated: 4 days ago




I am pretty sure I left my religion at the Christian summer camp in1985,

the one where the counselors convinced us

to be excited about playing "Gestapo Tag"


For 20 yrs,

I didn’t know that was where I had left it.

I always thought I left it in the kitchen of our church-owned housing

The day I ran into that uninvited parishioner

in my nightgown.

He was making his kid a sandwich.

Because our door was open.


For awhile,

I could have sworn I left it in Spokane

that morning when I read my older brother’s t-shirt that said

“Piss the devil off.

Listen to Christian Heavy Meta”


But maybe it wasn’t Spokane.


Maybe I lost it

in the migrant shacks

when I was 11.

The day I learned that INS took everybody

but the 2 yr old baby

because the orchardist didn’t want to pay his workers.


I suppose it could have been left in the back seat of that taxi on Haight street in 1995

—the one where the driver stopped traffic to cut me off

and yell at me,

leaning out his open window,

after reading the bumper sticker

on my red, Toyota Tercel that said

“The religious right is neither.”


Could I have forgotten my religion when the Presbyterian pastor’s wife

—a lady with 3 purple hickies on her neck

shared an unsolicited lecture with sister and I about the dangers of

gratuitous “S-E-X“

in Clan of the Cave Bear?


The places where it could have been left

are almost to numerous to count.


It’s been gone a long time.


Sometimes that happens with preacher’s kids.


But Im happy

with blaming it

on that

fucking camp.

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Ann Thane
Ann Thane
08 mar
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Sad. Poignant. Beautiful. Art.

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Thank you, Ann.

It’s a complicated subject isn’t it? The intersection of self, religion, spirituality, and politics can be such an uncomfortable place to determine who gets the right of way.

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Damn Rachel! Your writing....and your work hold me captive!

Stefanna

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I’m so glad you enjoyed it, Stefanna! Your encouragement is motivating. Is there a particular story or element in my work that you found particularly engaging? I’d love to hear more about what resonated with you.

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