Diabolus Ex Machina
God waits in the theater rafters
in white robes, and straps
that wrap his torso to a crane’s hook
that will lower him onto the stage
at the cue of a trumpet. His drop-in speech
is the quick save for his writer’s poor plot,
for only a god can make
the ludicrous convincing.
The devil lounges below the floorboards,
listening to footsteps crisscross above his head.
He knows each move and line: the understudy
for every actor. He waits by the trap door
to catch the one who falls into his lap, to pamper
him with wealth and petty power, ply him
with cognac, and then assume his role on stage.
About the Poet
Sara Backer won the 2015 Turtle Island Poetry Award for her chapbook Bicycle Lotus. Recent poems have appeared in Gargoyle, The Pedestal Magazine, So to Speak, Marathon Literary Review, Silver Blade, and Strange Horizons. Follow her on Twitter @BackerSara or sarabacker.com.