Elizabeth Barrette (ysabetwordsmith) wrote,
Elizabeth Barrette
ysabetwordsmith

  • Mood:

Poem: "False Prophets"

This poem was inspired by discussion with my_partner_doug.  It has been sponsored by janetmiles.  It belongs to the series Fledgling Grace.


False Prophets


After the Fledging,
everyone had questions
and everyone wanted answers.

There was no shortage of those
purporting to have answers,
except for God,

Who was notably silent on the matter.

Early on, it was easy,
when few people had wings
and not many knew what they were like.

In Alabama, a fiery redhead named Zeke
quoted from 1 Corinthians 15:52,
For the trumpet will sound,
and the dead will be raised imperishable,
and we shall be changed
. (1)

He insisted that the end times were at hand,
and certainly people were being changed,
so for months followers thronged around him.

But the dead did not rise,
and nobody heard any trumpets,
so eventually the crowds went away again.

In Africa, a man named Abasi
fabricated a pair of wings
and preached from a stand
so that people could not see him closely.

He preached against the queers
and the education of women
and white men who came for diamonds and oil
and how sinners were ruining the whole world.

People liked that sort of thing,
so for weeks he drew a considerable crowd
and the wealth that went with it.

Then one day he stumbled
stepping down from the stand,
and his fake wings fell off.
His followers left, never to return.

Later on, people began to learn
what real wings felt like,
the little differences between the types --
it was something that few could describe,
slimmer than a hint, more subtle than a hunch,
yet reliable all the same.

It was no more than the faintest tremble in grace,
but when the charlatans began to use dye
to mimic the appearance of more prestigious wings,
it didn't take months or weeks anymore --
it took minutes.

Someone put up a sign at church:
1 John 4:1,  it said,
Beloved, do not believe every spirit,
but test the spirits to see whether they are from God,
for many false prophets have gone out into the world
. (2)

Slowly, people were learning
to perceive what could not quite be seen.

* * *

Notes:

1) 1 Corinthians 15:52
English Standard Version (ESV)
52 in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.

2) 1 John 4:1
English Standard Version (ESV)
Test the Spirits
4 Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

Tags: cyberfunded creativity, fantasy, poem, poetry, reading, spirituality, writing
Subscribe
  • Post a new comment

    Error

    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 6 comments