By Cainon Leeds


I’ve come all the way here to talk to you.

I have come from birth

and teething rings and standing up and falling down

and stealing toys and riding bikes and building forts

and telling lies and driving cars and texting friends and

rebirth all the way to you

in an empty McDonald’s corner booth

around nine in the evening.

I should be dying to tell you the same thing

as those who came before me,

who were tortured but refused release,

who were beaten and spat upon and thrown in prison,

whose hands and feet were chained together,

whose faces were smashed in with rocks,

whose bellies and legs were sawn apart,

who died

to tell those who came before you:

A Man who was also God

lived and died but also lives

so that you and I can be free.

It’s simple enough and I do believe,

but I’m not dying

to tell you, and it’s killing me,

because I know I should be dying

to sit down across from you,

to look you in your bewildered eyes,

to use words like sin and death

as if they’re normal words

to bring to a conversation,

to casually bring a two-edged sword

to a knife fight,

to tell you that there is one way out

and that He is that way.

And though I’m not dying

to bring this evening to its climax,

I set my tray across from you

and introduce myself.


Cainon Leeds is a Christian, IT consultant, and amateur poet. He enjoys writing about everyday events, historical figures, and Christian themes. Four of his poems have been published elsewhere, and he’s currently working on a chapbook about autumn and lessons learned in college. He lives in Des Moines with his wife, Hannah, and their son, Titan.

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