Prose Poem The News: A Virgin Causes Problems

West New York, New Jersey.

A town that understands ambitious marketing.

A ginkgo tree. A distinctive knot.

A devil? A miracle? The Virgin Mary?

$1000 a day for police protection; quadruple that in votive candles.

Residents clash, hurling slurs and flowers.

"'We don't want Satan!' Ms. Cole, 57, shouted in Spanish as a 90-year-old woman with a long-stemmed white rose walked up and hit Mr. Domenech on the head and shoulders with the flower until three police officers asked him to move along."

Dante Domenech said the knot was witchcraft.

His assailant said she was 90 (but not her name).

A second miracle for Northern New Jersey. The first: Our Lady of Guadalupe of the junkyard tree stump, vandalized in May. (This one better, though. "More vivid.")

Among the non-believers: evangelical Christians ("idol worship"; "a sin"), priests from the Archdiocese of Newark ("a natural occurrence"), most people.

But what about her trademark cloak, so on-trend for fall?

"Many say that a dark outline around the edge of the knot depicts the cloak the Virgin Mary wore when she first appeared in the New World.

‘You can tell it's the Virgin of Guadalupe by the way she is dressed in a cloak,' Maria Julieta Baez, a West New York resident, said in Spanish."

Carmen Lopez saw it first, on her way to a perfume factory where she works.

Some people think it just looks like a vagina.

Previously: Cruel Taco Bell Hoax Rocks Tiny Alaskan Town

[New York Times // Image via Andrew Miller/The Jersey Journal]