If I were called in

to construct a religion

relief would figure prominently.

Best of all the positive emotions:

warmer than contentment, deeper than joy,

intenser than ecstasy.

Congregants would go to church

in wincingly tight shoes

which they could slip off once seated.

The building would have toilets 

but their use would be forbidden 

until the end of the service. 

Prayers would give thanks for droughts

ended, and for dangerous illnesses

recovered from, and for dismal

performances in exams that somehow

achieved passing grades, and chest-pains

that were merely muscle-strains

and hymns would celebrate dreadful

might-have-beens, and terrifying events

that never, thank God, came to pass.