A Canticle for Blasphemy

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1 min read

Editor’s Note: We offer another poem from the Men of the West Poet Laureate, Ian McLeod. And yes, he is as cool in person as he is in his poetry.

A Canticle for Blasphemy

my dreams

tell me

i wanna be

the bastard spawn

st. francis of assisi

and amelie

and live a life of

profane decency

and nonsense silliness

and absolute kindness

and give to the poor

until i am poorer

than the least

of them–

and my betters

are offering me

sandwiches

but i’ll smile

and say that i

already had my turn

at mammon’s buffet

and his finest provender

tastes like burnt hair

and while true it’s warm

inside his house,

hell is also warm.

so i’ll delight

in cold with

the little fire.

but still i’ll shout

harsh like this:

“woe unto you!”

because we’re all

brothers and sisters

and you are too violent

to take two seconds

and enough pride in

yourselves

to tell your enemies

“I love you”

and mean it

just to see what

happens.

but while i yet

prophesy

like a madman,

i’ll be playing

with brother puppy

and singing

with sister crow.

that’s who my

dreams

tell me to be.

i don’t presume

god.

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