Saturday, 21 February 2009

The Get-Out

The god of excuses
could get away with anything.
"Look", he said, (his hand in the robe
of the headman's daughter),
"what goes in Heaven
goes on Earth."

He was a god
of many faces.

As War and Fertility
he straddled the world

As Death, he shrugged,
driven at last into a corner -
"what else could I do?"
he said.

I wrote this poem a few years ago. It first appeared in the North Eastern poetry magazine Scratch (issue 13), along with Ranter.


BarbaraS said...

Ooo, that's good. I like it.

Poet in Residence said...

I have read somewhere recently that's god's only excuse is that he doesn't exist...

But anyway, as they say, each to his own!
Don't suppose you were one of the running "remnants" in the Howgill fell race that Weaver saw at the w/end??

Frances said...

I rather like that Dominic

Anonymous said...

This packs a punch, Dominic. And with the BBC still refusing to grant a Thought For The Day slot to non-believers, there's a need for the odd uppercut from that quarter.

Dominic Rivron said...

Thanks for these comments.

One of the interesting things about posting poems on a blog is that sometimes, in response to comments, you feel moved to say more about the poem than you might otherwise say.

It's interesting to see what others have to say about it. I think the poem is mostly to do with the god/gods humankind constructs "in its own image" to justify its behaviour. As for God, I rather like what the Tao Te Ching (although it talks of "Dao" rather than "God") says:
"The Dao that can be understood cannot be the primal, or cosmic, Dao, just as an idea that can be expressed in words cannot be the infinite idea."
(Which is vaguely similar to the recent statement of a leading scientist: "The universe is not merely queerer than we imagine, it is queerer than we can imagine").

I agree with Dick, that Radio 4 should let non-believers into its TFTD slot. I don't consider myself to be a "non-believer", but I think those who do often express more spiritual insight than official representatives of organised religion.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Needs thinking about that poem.