For Sarah and all those who also shelter beneath his cape:
We are not at home today to the sweet things
of life. In truth, we are allowed nothing
but bitterness to flavour our everything; food,
drink. It coats our fingers and clings to
our eyelids and blurs our vision and burns
and burns and burns into our touch. It’s all
we, who are His disciples, can feel. It is
our mark, how He shows that He possesses us

Slap our smile away, strike it from our face
and claw into those puckering cheeks and drag
them again towards the downturn, their
rightful place. He spits at us as we look
towards the sky from the window where he
keeps us under his pressing thumb.

Cruel, cruel master who tells us not to look
that way, not to think that way not to ripple
with the pleasures that he rejects.

He likes guilt. He approves of remorse. He
picks at confidence and, at the first taste
he grabs and carries handfuls of it
and throws them howling into his greedy
mouth. We are not allowed a pure sky,
it must be corrupted by plunging thoughts.
We are forbidden to succeed; even at
the point of success He will stick a
knife sharpened on introspection deep,
deep, deep into our backs and twist
it hard so we are irretrievably impaled
and our insides are spun about it like
spirals around a devil’s fork.

Shall we start to speak? He tells us we
may not. We slump into the shape He dictates
as He furls around us, tears and bites at the
skin of our hands to punish our protest, at
the signs that leak out. Compliance is required.
Compliance is expected.

Our tongues are pinched and forced back into
our heads and made to knot against our throats
where He will only let them sit behind the beginnings
of a poker face, dour with the lines of His

You are merciless, Master, merciless and
a cruel bully who has hidden us away.
Please, not for eternity.

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