Apocalyptic Phone Call, 2002 & Dolphins Don’t Blow Each Other Up

Apocalyptic Phone Call, 2002

On the phone, you told me you’d found Jesus,

that you never really lost him, just strayed,

made your way back,

and I should read my gospels,

all of them, Old Testament

and New, familiarize myself

with Daniel-you knew now

you named your son

after him.

You said you’d seen signs on the news,

the earthquake in Istanbul,

how the fault line in Turkey

originated in Jerusalem, where a mosque

stands heretically over the stone

of Abraham, and in Cape Town

some high force winds passed through.

No one had been expecting them.

The sound of running horses.

I asked, Was it a sirocco?

and you replied, Did you hear about this?

Before I could mention Grade 8 Geography,

you continued on to say the winds

had a Muslim place of origin, that

Jesus had talked about the Anti-Christ,

signs of his presence, how

you now believe this to be Mohammed,

and that all those following him

are being led away from God.

Jesus says it, you said, and Daniel.

It all matches up.

Distraught you couldn’t convince me, I tried

to ease your panic. Don’t worry, I said.

If Jesus does show himself

at the end, I’ll tell him

my sister was right all along.

I didn’t hear your reply.

Dolphins Don’t Blow Each Other Up

Front page article:

a South African scientist’s claim

that despite the large size

of their brains

underwater mammals

are not very smart.

He berates them for accepting

man-made borders, waxes on

about the greater number of ganglia

lesser of neurons

being more a sign of their capacity

for bearing ocean temperatures

than one of intelligence.

But do dolphins bicker

in front of offspring

or, at a party with friends,

find any opportunity

to cut each other




Do they start wars

on pretence


Humans, hungry,

might jump through hoops for food.

I would do it for sex

or a day at the spa. And who is he, this

privileged scientist, that is above escaping

the narrow confines

of his own supposition.

© Julie Mahfood

Julie Mahfood lives near Montreal where she hosts WIRE, a quarterly reading series for Montreal’s West Island writers. She has been shortlisted in THIS Magazine’s 2008 Great Canadian Literary Hunt; her work has appeared in the Literary Review of Canada, The Antigonish Review, and others and as well on the CD DuBref Session 1: Spoken word anthology.