Raymond Hammond

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        The First National Bank of God

“The hundredfold is mine and I take it now!”

—Kenneth Copeland

god is my personal bank
that’s right you sinful suckers
all I have to do is pray
and money rains down from high
just like winning a game show— 
pray and not even grovel
nee beg nor borrow nor steal
only speak the word of faith
and demand that my birthright
by salvation be fulfilled
here is my withdrawal slip
a holy oiled and anointed
prayer cloth for which i sent
the tv evangelist
a seed-gift of ninety-nine
ninety-nine—my last hundred
but at over one hundred-
fold return as he says god
promises to those who give—
i am one hundred percent
certain that is a damn good
return on my investment


Raymond P. Hammond is the editor-in-chief of both The New York Quarterly and NYQ Books. He holds an MA in American Poetry from NYU’s Gallatin School and is the author of Poetic Amusement, a book of literary criticism. He lives in Beacon, NY with his wife, the poet Amanda J. Bradley, and their dog Hank.