#combustionfast
Kristen Caven







“This will work,” says Clare, watching benevolently from the visionary space as his handlers begin removing papal vestments. She’s been relentless since this began, but he did pray for her guidance, the patron saint of television.

He’s more comfortable without the sweltering robes, in spite of Vatican Solar. Every minute the temperature rises, increasing human suffering. Today’s press conference for a year-long Global Comubustion Fast will galvanize humanity, the biggest worldwide media event ever, and most significant Christian event, Clare believes, since the Ascention itself.

They peel his papal t-shirt from his head, and he clutches his mother’s Miraculous Medal, which he wears on a chain at all times. He kisses it, putting his faith in both the mother of God and the magna mater herself. Yet the Pope worries about the most humble of matters. After his butler ties the thin white robe, Francis waves him off, bending to peel off his own boxers. Underneath it all, he is a man with a member, and he begs it to behave.

The world’s political and spiritual celebrities welcome him with applause. His eyes touch those of the Dalai Lama, Elizabeth, Oprah, Bruce, Barack, Deepak, Echkart, Sri, Michelle and Beyonce, and lock with Hillary, more loved and loathed than Madonna herself. This must be done, they all agree.  Floating above the cameras, Clare beams beatifically. The media buzz becomes electric as they all breathe together, then silently untie their belts.

“Hail, Mary,” Francis prays. Their robes all fall as one. 


First published: November 2017
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