The Prophet

They squabble and spit
to defend beliefs
clashing on spiritual frontiers,
no true script but the audacity of fools
leaking wisdom into wasteland.

From out of desert comes one who
would tell us what we need to know,
lead us where we need to go
allow us to discover the plot,
bless a heart open to the library
of stories where we hear echoes
in landscapes of difference,
embracing unfamiliar colours
respecting otherness, feeling enlarged,
part of the peoplescape of creation,
recognising the voice of God
in a foreign land.

Conversations between us
speak of the silence of the oppressed,
the coming together of antidotes
of solidarity to fill
the dark chasm of injustice,
with enough religion to love
but not enough to hate –
all this while listening for a voice
at the heart of the storm.

But in truth
the word must come forth
not from white smoke
nor cloud pouring from a placid sky,
nor fed by terror kept at bay by virtue
understanding and being tough,
but from within the heart of everyman,
though virtue alone may not be enough.

© 2020 Lea Knowles