Cassandra Baliga is a graduate of Purdue University Fort Wayne with a B.A. in English. She’s had work previously appear in ANGLES, The Lucky Jefferson, Sad Girls Club and Cold Mountain Review. She is also a two-time winner of the DeKalb Snowbound Writer’s Poetry Contest.
a cult for two, the leader doesn’t need to wear a robe
or beads. Street clothes, jeans, a ratty t-shirt are suitable.
They don’t have to have slick convictions
that capture the imagination. A smile,
a sad backstory will do.
When you start
to question them, they don’t need
to turn into Jim Jones, sweating
behind a pulpit, calling out
and beating fists.
A few casual half-truths
in the car
the kitchen, wherever,
And they don’t need men
posted with machine
guns by the back door
to keep you,
of glaring eyes,
the littlest grip