This is now

In Egyptian mummies, smallpox.
This was before.  Before
Christ, maybe before
God, maybe before

salvation. Who can say
when God was born? And
whether God’s countenance
was immaculate or scarred by

pustules swollen with fluid,
turbid and sunken, though
not from great pox — which
was syphilis, and thus unworthy

of God — but a smaller
virus that plagued,
that afflicted, that God
might understand suffering,

that God — fretful, febrile
and blind — might create us.

Which explains a lot, if
you think about it.

If we, too, are blind,
if we fret and burn,
if we scar, we are all
the more God’s children.

Imitation is the
sincerest form of
flattery, and even
a deity longs

to be validated, God’s
pockmarked face
recognizable as
our own, flawed and

beautiful, living
and dying.

This is now.




  1. I love this, Cate. So thought-provoking. Some will not like it, I’m sure, as it instigates questioning. It brought to mind ‘The Blind Watchmaker’ by Richard Dawkins, which I read twenty years ago. (A great book, if you can stand the technical detail.) The moment we stop questioning is the moment a large part of us has died. As always, thanks for the mind food. 🙂 -Russ

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’re welcome, Russ! And thanks for mentioning the book; I’ve not heard of it, but I’ll check it out! As for questions, I find I like the sensation of being left hanging, of not knowing, in poetry — though I confess I’m not as fond of it in real life. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

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