Humanist Voices in Verse: “The Groom”

This week’s poem is by Matt Stancel. Matt lives with his wife and two daughters deep in the Bible Belt.  His book, Burn This Novel, is available at It is loosely based on his year spent at a Pentecostal Christian college in 1995, and it is hilarious. He is also finishing a collection of poetry and flash fiction with a humanist voice to be released this year.

If you’d like to contribute original poetry to Humanist Voices in Verse, send an email to with “Poetry” in the subject line. Please send no more than three poems for consideration per week.

The Groom

The dress is an antique—
over time snow white
faded to pearl or ivory.

The groomsmen fidget—
pastors and politicians
make small talk and jokes.

The bridesmaids left
once the wine was gone
and the bread went stale.

The beautiful bride
wipes her curly hair
and tears from her face.

“Baby, he isn’t coming,”
says a woman in a blue dress
on the front row.

“What if he walks in now?”
A desperate hand
points to an open door.

“It’s been nearly two thousand years, sweetie—
Time to move on.”