Faith crisis poetry

Abandoned Strings

  1. The hand within or up above directs each action fake:
  2. Each word, each nod, each praise of joy, whate’er the master makes.
  3. Bow the head, fold the arms, expound, and testify,
  4. Say yes, say no, arm to the square, and never question why.
  5. Shushed and limp, no life inside, fifteen million strong.
  6. A sleight of hand awakens them to join the lockstep throng—
  7. Defend, sustain, endorse, uphold—accept the master’s hand.
  8. No voice, no mind, no heart without the revelation’s strand.
  9. Stuck in a cage—for years on end—in cold and confined form
  10. Until the master comes with keys and says, “You must perform”.
  11. ’Neath whip and chair under the tent, to jump, and run, and beg
  12. Before the congregation hushed; each rote and rite obeyed.
  13. Fly through the hoops and beg for fish; baptize them with the splash
  14. Dive down so deep, jump up so high—a calculated flash.
  15. Dance for the pipes, climb up the mount; the strait and narrow trod
  16. With leash and chains and shackles, too, tied to an iron rod.
  17. But some find out the gate’s not locked and open it with faith
  18. And courage, too—a cautious step, despite the pressure great
  19. To stay onboard, repeat refrains, and overload the shelf
  20. Where will you go? I do not know, but go there as myself.
  21. And there’s the stage, empty now, reluctant there to climb.
  22. A word, a no, a lonely shout, autonomous this time
  23. Cry prayers, see heav’n, eat at the feast, with fervour praises sing
  24. An agent now, to act with choice; alas, abandoned strings.

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By Kim Siever

Kim Siever is an independent queer journalist based in Lethbridge, Alberta. He writes daily news articles, focusing on politics and labour.

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