Wednesday, 20 July 2016

Private Deities

(for sian)

 
Dona nobis
Pacem, pacem
Dona nobis pacem
Dona nobis
Pacem, pacem
Dona nobis pacem

i
If God exists, she sees me through a window
And I am small and flat to her; and if infinity
Is placed within my heart, it won't come out.
Everything is bigger in the higher worlds
And ecstasy and poverty and pain are so much richer
Textures brighter and more muted
Shadows deeper, cast in layers by bodies that go in and out
And intersect and feel so many things of which
I am not constructed to conceive.
A realm of perfect forms in contrast
To our ersatz life, a realm where solids are
So solid that their impact causes God to hurt and bleed
And not get up.
God is – and let me posit this to you, my heresy – not one;
What if every one of us is blessed, is possessed of
A God of our very own, a private deity watching us
From the world above who showers us with love
Or makes us suffer, makes us affluent and beautiful
Or ill-conceived and poor or perfect or trapped in ruins and war
And crafts our shape and shifts our private corner of the universe
And creates to the best of her ability?
And God, another God, not mine, created Adam and Eve to be
A means of adoration,
Or possibly Adam and Steve and someone else
To keep them company.

ii
When God, another God, not mine, and possibly not yours,
Created Adam and Eve to be her means of adoration,
It was because she had been dumped.
She sat, six days before the world began,
In an Italian restaurant, and the waiters asked if she
Was ready yet to order and offered to remove the second setting
On the other side of the candle.
God had grown up strange and incomplete and scarred
Bereft of all the social skills that benefit you still in
The ideal realms of intellectual principle and form
Where all tables, waiters, mobile phones and jilted
Would-be lovers are one
And every touch is shadowed by my skin against yours
And even the sex is Platonic.
And she is every lonely individual
And she deserves your love as much
As every blameless recipient of your ignorance.
And God said to her creation, you should know me,
And then she thought it over and said, shit, no, probably you you shouldn't
Definitely you shouldn't, and maybe if you knew God you'd be
Ashamed to have been created by a fuck-up like me
Because, Christ knows, I'm embarrassed, I can't even look in the mirror
And each reflection here is all reflections
And consequently often far too much to bear,
And God said, see this apple? And Adam and Eve said, yeah, we see the apple
And God said, don't eat it, don't eat, OK?
Don't eat the apple.
Don't eat the apple.
Don't eat the apple.
We know how that turned out.

iii
So there's this other God who the other week
Passed the children's playground by his home and watched
The children swinging sliding running laughing like trickling water
And one of the parents came over and said, hey, and he said, hey
And the parent said, is one of these kids yours, and God said,
No, and it's so sad, and the parent said, why? And God said,
It's so sad that they're all damned and they don't know how
Serious the world is, because nothing is innocent here and the
Parent looked at him with one eye half-shut and said, OK, and said,
I think you'd better go now, because I think I might have to call the police,
And God said, please yourself, and went back home and thought a bit
And thought he'd be best served taking out on his own creations.
He'd been into role-playing, made adolescent monsters our of base components
And when he was bored with them he erased them from his inventory
In fire and plague and swarm and famine and finally flood as best he could
Because they never seemed to do the things he asked.
He had these rules, you see, a lot of rules, for he was a jealous God
And punished his creations seven times over for reasons that seemed to
Other Gods and other people here to be a little petty.
He wanted to make a world he could love with people he could love,
He hated his own so much, and never seemed to grasp the problem there.
God's a griefer now, and uses his talent for the mechanics, not aesthetics
To rain down wrath and destruction upon the works of other Gods and
He would be feared so much for he can show you how to find and hurt the other Gods
Who cross him, and makes their phone numbers and real-life addresses public
And brings misery and sorrow to all, for he is vengeful, so vengeful
And demands you pray to him and him alone.

iv
As above, so above and above and above, each level of God
Another unfolding of scale, another private deity; my God
Believes in a God who believes in a God who believes in a God
And somewhere up above an infinity of scale
All things are one thing and no mysteries exist.
God is infinite and in infinite numbers;
Each reduction brings us to the finite; each scale beneath
A smaller thing, more brief, less textured, narrower in dimension.
And somewhere at the bottom, or at least one scale above the end,
You have me.

vi
They do not call them avatars for nothing;
Each reflects the needs, desires, skills, aesthetics, hopes
Of every private deity who chooses to create
Who must create because the world we have above is
Not the world we want to make our only world,
Because we deal in penal substitution, make
Our little Christs to bear our sins to suffer
Heal
Create our small religions
Gather up disciples;
Now I shall make you fishers of compliments
And every day that someone new becomes a being
And a story begins is a tiny Christmas day
A genesis without a midwife or a womb
A new creation.
A nativity.

ix
Every day I find a new belief, a new approach to faces,
Places, things to see, to do, to be with you
I find my voice now. I find a place in the sun and she and I are one.
L'objet petit a becomes once gained an objet d'art, an object lesson
And a place inside becomes an out, coming out, out of line
Out of time.
I am who I am, and if my private God is flawed
I do not care; I love her.

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