the lord’s prayer [with footnotes]

Our Father

[ definitely NOT Mother
or any other
hippy moniker
this is a strictly Christian melodrama
with a god who looks like a grouchy farmer

Who art in Heaven

[ somewhere north of Carlisle
on the A7

Hallowed be thy name

[ ‘hallowed’ : a portmanteau word
meaning you’re allowed
to say hello
but personal appearances are pretty much a no-go

Thy kingdom come

[ a difficult one:
technically the kingdom had ALREADY come;
all HE had to do was put the lights on

Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven

[ a LOT of theological ground to cover
when you consider
that another
person with will
is the devil
so … erm… okaaaay… over to you…

Give us this day our daily bread

[ for those of you in the congregation
worried about transubstantiation
and pray for
a gluten free wafer
because you’re celiac
I’m sorry but there’s no way back
the books say Jesus was ten percent wheat
so that’s what the Vatican says you’re to eat

And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us

[ ‘trespass’ doesn’t mean the kind of sign
you see on security gates all the time
‘Trespassers will be prosecuted’
‘Fences Are Electrocuted’
‘Armed Response’
NOT the welcome anyone wants
when you’re going from door to door
collecting alms (not arms) for the poor;
so for ‘trespass’
read ‘press pass’
as in ‘access all areas’
a bit more relaxed and a lot less nefarious

And lead us not into temptation

[ if He’s supposed to lead us into GOOD
why build such a tempting neighbo
urhood? ]

but deliver us from evil

[ ‘evil’ not in the sense
of Milla Jovovich in Residents
one through five
where CGI creatures from the Umbrella Hive
use zombifying rain to drive
a plot progressively shakier
than the box office takings
NO – I mean evil
as in The DEVIL
as a little clue
has Evil
RIGHT THERE, in his name
and the D stands for Duncan, or maybe Duane

For thine is the kingdom

[ a clubby, bougie-beardy kinda place
where saints drift around with weary faces
in a heavenly kind of homeostasis
on homie
and if they see the devil they’re like blow me

the power and the glory

[ same ol’ story ]

for ever and ever

[ which as these things go is somewhat better
than simply forever
but it’s subject to metaphysical pressure
and there’s no such thing as never ever ever


[ originally ‘All the Men’
then ‘A Man’
VERY briefly Ian
but eventually settling on ‘Amen’
and zero prospect of changing back again

lord’s prayer (annotated)

Our Father / forever in a lather / good god, bad god – in & out of favour / however you’d rather / but either way you’d have to say a brilliant balcony waver / eternity off for good behaviour / special deal on the super saviour / holy love’s like holy weather /  keep your heads down and stick together

who art in heaven / everything in his glorious possession / no question / sitting in line with his male succession / Mathew, Mark, Luke & Kevin / all with a faintly saintly sour expression / yawning through your dumb confession

hallowed be thy name / hollowed be thy game / borrowed be thy blessing & bellowed be thy blame

thy kingdom come / clap the lightning & bang the drum / raise the oceans & quench the sun / then you’ll see he’s number one / the feared & bearded, transcendent one / keeper of keys to the holy fun

thy will be done / or he’ll tear a new hole for everyone

on earth as it is in heaven / overseen by Peter, IT backup from Kevin / office hours seven through eleven / database running from Albuquerque NM / to Woolacombe, Devon

give us this day our daily bread / a car for the drive and a gun for the bed / you wish on a star and get this shit instead

and forgive us our trespasses / our bedbugs, butt plugs & alton towers passes / a bin bag for our disposable asses / particularly the working classes / who’ll definitely need those Poundland sunglasses / when they buckle up for Beezelbub’s barbeque gasses

as we forgive those who trespass against us / but not if it leaves us in any way defenceless / war, famine or plagueless / angel-less / hopeless / wave the bible more & turn the page less

and lead us not into temptation / moral equivocation / ethical consideration / alternative explanation / trust us – the train don’t stop at that particular station / we put a stained glass sign outside the dungeon / sorry for any interruption / major hypocrisy under construction

but deliver us from evil / civil unrest & social upheaval / the wrong kinda sin & the right kinda people / or anything heretical / socio-political / better play safe and go full medieval / kneel in the cathedral / run to the trumpet like a well-trained beagle

for thine is the kingdom / the unutterable thingdom

IMG_3293the power and the glory / the usual story

for ever and ever

and ever

and ever