Melancholy Hyperbole

Poetry about longing.

Tortilla Jesus

His face appeared, the texture of ground corn,
staring to his left, the crown of thorns,
his black, wooly hair,
and all Maria Rubio had done was to pray
every day since she was ten, walk on her knees
to the altar each week, bless her family,
give thanks. Then between her hands
she had pressed the corn paste flat in the skillet
and when she flipped it with her metal spatula,
her piousness e was rewarded from the very tortilla
she had pressed into life
with the same palms
that daily folded together in prayer,
the same palms through which her rosary beads moved
one by one. These hands had made and turned a tortilla
from which Jesus himself stared.
Soon, a crowd gathered in Lake Arthur, New Mexico,
hungry for a look.

marissa mcnamara 1Marissa McNamara teaches English at a two year college in Atlanta,Georgia. When she was working on her bachelor’s degree, a professor told her that she was not a good writer, and she stopped writing for 15 years. Then she decided that he was wrong and began writing again. Marissa enjoys traveling, reading, her two crazy dogs, and her yard art, including one concrete chicken and a flock of pink plastic flamingos. Her work has appeared in several publications including RATTLE, StorySouth, and Future Cycle. She has work forthcoming in The Cortland Review.


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