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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Poetry  |  House: Booksie Classic

What do you know
about the Immaculate Conception
Fay asked me

bright idea
I said
thumbing through
a pack of cigarette
football cards

no it's what the nuns
at school have been
talking to us about
she said

I looked at her
as we sat on
the grass in front
of Banks House
Saturday afternoon

so what's it about then
this immaculate thingy
I said

well our Blessed Lady
was born free
from original sin
by virtue of the foreseen
merits of her son
Jesus Christ
Fay said

none the wiser
I said
taking out a picture card
of Stanley Matthews
and gazing at it

well all of us are born
in original sin
that is the sin
we inherited
from Adam and Eve
called the Fall
I think it's called
she said

I put the Matthews card
on my thigh
and looked through others
who fell?
I said
thumbing through
other cards

Adam and Eve
in the Garden of Eden
Fay said

what did they fall over?
I said
looking at her
sitting there
her bright blue eyes
staring at me
her fair hair
long and free
from bands or ribbons

no not fell like that
but a fall from grace
from goodness
she said

and that's what
they teach you
at that school of yours?
I said

she nodded

what no maths
or English
or boring science?
I added

o we do that as well
she said
but more about religion
as well

I took out a Peter Brabrook
football picture card
and you believe that?
I said
about that immaculate thingy?

Yes of course
she said
that's what we've
been taught

and your old man
believes that too?
I said

of course he does
he's Catholic too
she said
doesn't your dad
believe it?

Unless it was mentioned
in a film staring Betty Gable
I don't think
my old man would
I said

I see
she said

my old man said
he would only believe
in a god if this god
gave him a wallet
full of money
I said
thumbing through the cards again
and putting
the Peter Brabrook card
onmy other thigh
and shuffled the cards

that's not a good
idea of God
she said

no I guess not
I said
but each person
has their own idea
what God is like
or does

do they?
she said

guess so
I said
I put the other
picture cards away
and put the other two cards
in my back pocket
of my jeans

well what do you
want to do now?
I said

don't know
she said

I can show you
my collection of toy soldiers
or we can go
to Bedlam park
for a swim
I said

she looked at me
we can go swimming
she said
I'll go get
my swimming costume
and towel
andwe can meet
on the balcony
she said

I said

so we walked off the grass
and into the Square
to our flats
and walked up
the concrete stairs together
to get ready to go
for a swim

the sky was blue
but becoming dim.

Submitted: April 06, 2016

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