Preacher Man


by Joshua Seigal


Mr Garritty was a teacher of mine, a red-cheeked theologian

and a God-fearing man. He’d engage us in discourse in broad

Scottish brogue and traverse the arguments through

knowledge’s caves, helping us look up to see the sun.


He’d draw snaking diagrams in spiders on the board,

and pick at our bones for answers, one by one. Finding

fallacies like polyps on our nascent tongues he’s steer us back

onto reason’s path. He seemed to have an answer for everything:


He was studying at Cambridge for a PhD

on Thomas Aquinas, was familiar with

evolution as well as myth. He would sit

with me after hours in his study, chewing

over the twigs of Descartes and Derrida;

discussing whether or not God exists.


I have since found out that he became a priest.

I want to fire questions like bullets as he kneels in a pew,

to ask, as he crosses his heart with his kindly fingers,


and you believe a virgin gave birth to a child,

and that some beneficent teacher watches over us?

You mean to say that when we die we’re not dirt in the ground,

and that God splayed open the sea to let the mortals pass through?

I’ve since lost faith in reason.

Joshua Seigal studies philosophy at Univeristy College London. He is a featured poet at Poets’ Letter Magazine.

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