Last Temptation

Circle etched in the desert’s drought
Heart pulled out and flesh subdued
Love of God that tears the soul
Apples offered, blood-stain red
Who will sever evil’s chain
That binds each one unto the next
Borne within, our nature’s curse?
The echo of a serpent’s tongue
Bare-breasted, or a lion’s roar
Pride-praising, or aloneness
And none will hold Your hand…
Who will cast the sinless stone?
Only those whose eyes are blind.
Who will castigate the world
For the Kingdom of the Soul?
How on earth shall Kingdom come?
You tremble at your miracles
As life restores the rotting limbs;
You shudder as the voices speak
That You are Son of Man, and God
And those who see You see His Face
Does God bid peace, or bid He War?
The blood is running down Your palms
Does He bid heart, or bid He ax?
The signs come little at a time…
The temple tables spill their coins
In blood that flows down temple walls
And dogs lick at the bleeding corpse
Of old laws, being born anew
Our hearts are readied now for more
And God is not an Israelite
But You presume too much, they say
Are You the saint of blasphemy?
What is the way to cure the soul,
Bring Man unto the wedding feast?
To die! Yes, You must die…
Of Your own choice, of Your own will
Outstretched, and flogged, and spat upon
You must in all things empty dry
Die to self, and all it means..
Die to all that might have been…
But what’s this flame that beckons?
The flame of many voices bound
That’s comes unto the end
In angel’s form, with golden hair
That hums in heart, and strikes in ax,
The pulls the nails from open wounds
That offers life, and love
A woman’s touch, and children born,
That offers, not the grandest things
But simple things of hearth and home
Is it too much for flesh and bone,
To bear this curse alone?
Die like men, the voice betrays
Die, and watch the world consumed!
In fire, in fury, die…
No…struggle on…
Oh, Father, hear me…
Make a Feast…
I am the Lamb…
Slain from the First…
I will die and rise again…
I will be the Messiah…
In thorn-bush crowned,
Naked and defiled,
And still I will smile and cry

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