Chasing Grace – Lauren Scharhag

This is how I handle myself:
gingerly, then roughly.
I am a pilgrim within my own body,
looking for something to hail.
The beautiful girls walk by
and I am the unholy ghost
at their well-turned heels.
They don’t see me go out
with my compass and lantern,
searching for some
overlooked relic.
Then I remember
that I am not dead yet.
These knucklebones are still
firmly attached.
I am attached to the hands
that are both the seekers
and the sought-after.
What secrets might my entrails spill?
I try to be careful, but I am
increasingly frantic,
cuts appearing and deepening
in this desperate claw
through the thorn bushes
on our way to grace.
O Lord,
this dermis is so heavy.
I long to lift it like a skirt
and run.
But I’d only trip
on my way to meet You.

Lauren ScharhagLauren Scharhag is the author of eleven books, including West Side Girl & Other Poems and Requiem for a Robot Dog (Cajun Mutt Press). Her work has appeared in over 100 literary venues around the world. She is the recipient of the Door is a Jar Award and the Gerard Manley Hopkins Award for poetry, as well as a fellowship from Rockhurst University for fiction. She lives in Kansas City, MO. To learn more about her work, visit: