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Colorado Quarterly Magazine 

"Rewriting the Myths, Redefining the Realities"

 

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God and Man 

by Freddy Bosco

God pirouetted down the avenue under the sun, wearing a heavy army trench coat buttoned and buckled and fastened up around Himself. His hair was matted, His fingernails had grown long, and His face was sunburned and slick with grease and caked with grime. One of His front teeth had come loose and His right index and middle fingers glowed a deep amber on account of many purloined, mooched and filched cigarettes and twice as many butts being smoked down very close to them. He wore a smile of ineffable bliss which was His sole article of cosmic jewelry. 

No wristwatch on His arm; He guided His actions by the sun. He took frequent reckonings by throwing back His head to incline His face the maximum number of degrees in its direction. He absorbed His heavenly data with open arms and a broad smile that permitted light to filter through the open space in His teeth so that His tongue could taste the flavor of the sun. His Dance of Solar Bliss left the lesser mortals who shared the sidewalk with Him feeling aghast. Leave it to Him to create a stir in His wake. More than one human there on the thoroughfare felt contempt for Him, while just as many registered pity. 

One pitying, curious man approached Him and asked, ‘How you doin’ there, pal? You all right?” God answered that He was fine and remarked that it was a beautiful day. He added that He just might allow someone to buy Him a cup of coffee. At the luncheonette they exchanged small talk. “I make My living as a Guardian of the Skies,” God offered. ‘Oh swell,” said the man, “In spite of or because of the EPA?’ 

“There are so many beautiful angels around,” He said. “I know you are one of My angels. Do you see this coat? An angel gave Me this coat.” God stroked the lapels of His coat. As He fingered the lines, the man 

could not help noticing that God’s hands shook. The man asked Him if He would like something to eat. God examined the menu and told the waitress that a Bar-B-Cue beef sandwich was just what the doctor ordered. 

The man was surprised to hear God speaking of doctors, because at that very moment he was entertaining serious notions of committing God for psychiatric observation. What are you going to do with a twirling grubby Deity, anyway? Proceed gently: He may be operating on a hair trigger. God ate the sandwich ravenously, dribbling gobs of the rich, red sauce onto the front of His angelic trench coat. He wiped the spots He’d spilled and the residue on His plate with becalmed hands and He licked His fingers. 

When God started to coo after His lunch, the man decided the time was right to make the pitch. “Listen Your Grace—no; that’s not right. Your Holiness ... No. My Dear Lord, how would You like to go to a place where they would let You rest and take a bath? There would be lots of angels to take care of You. It’s not far from here and I’m quite sure they’ll let You keep the coat.” To the man’s relief, God went for theidea. God and the man walked a short distance down the avenue to a bus stop. They took a number 10 bus to the University Hospital. En route, the man carefully watched the Divinity for signs of suspicion, distrust and rampaging anxiety, but He took the trip well, cooing again and beaming, especially when the lumbering vehicle angled through a park. 

Having once arrived at the hospital, they headed for the Emergency Room. A clerk at the desk asked the man what the problem was. The man chose his words with utmost care, trying to convey the enormity of the problem without disturbing God. “Well, uh, He...sleeps in the park and He needs some rest.” “Has He got a card?” the clerk asked. The man asked God if He had a card. God stared blankly. The clerk referred the man and his Patient to the Admissions Office.

When God’s Name was called, He was out playing in the halls. Man was furious and told the clerk to wait until he could find his Patient. Upon being interviewed, the admitting clerk said she couldn’t issue Him a card because He insisted to listing the sky as His address. The clerk asked the man to intervene. The man eventually learned that the Mother of God lives in a suburb of Kansas City and he shared the glad news with the clerk. The man escorted a card-carrying God back to the Emergency Room.

At the desk, the clerk asked the man what was wrong. “Well, He sleeps in the park and needs some rest and He thinks He’s God.” ‘Got what?’ the clerk asked. “”No,” the man insisted, “God, God. He thinks He’s God.” “Oh,” said the clerk. “Psychiatric. You better take Him back to the Admissions Office and have Barbara bring Him here. Much faster that way.” 

The man grew increasingly nervous about God’s attention span and His patience. God suddenly muttered something about having to be out in His creation. He spun on a heel and exited. The man called after Him, but there was no impeding His Holy Omnipotence. The man found God in the parking lot, standing with His face tilted to the sun. “Listen,” said the man, “don’t you want to do the polite thing?” God confessed that He did. He followed the man back into the hospital. 

Halfway down the corridor to the psychiatric evaluation room, God succumbed to doubt. The Deity cannot go around surrendering Himself to medicine men in big buildings. He cannot give Himself up to those who want to disassemble His head to evaluate its components. He balked, He ran out the door, out of the hospital, throwing His card on the grounds and He headed down the sidewalk. The man pursued Him. “Buddy!” he called. “Pal!” God strode briskly, with a hint of military bearing to His stride. So much for the Dance of Solar Bliss; the minute you reveal a trace of the Special Happiness of Heaven, some pinhead comes along, wanting to dissect You. 

The man caught up with God. “Listen,” he said, laying a sympathetic hand on His shoulder. “You’re keeping them all waiting. If You’d only cooperate with us, we could have You feeling lots better. Now why won’t You come with me?” God turned and glared at the hand the man had laid on His shoulder. He said nothing, but showed a monumental sadness and tiredness in being chased. 

The man knew he had a live One on the line. He hated to let Him go. But even when He has Bar-B-Cue sauce all down the front of His coat, the Deity is entitled to breathe the fresh air of His creation. The man took his hand from God’s epauleted shoulder and threw Him back into the cosmic sea. He watched as the traffic parted for Him and He was gone.

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