Jan MatsysLot and His Daughters, 1565.

          Listen, I have two daughters
who are virgins.
— Genesis 19:8

It was my great uncle
who reasoned with Him.

“Don’t,” he pleaded,
“Sometimes the guilty
and the innocent look the same . . .
sometimes we can’t even
tell the difference.”

“Perhaps you’re right,”
was the answer,
“Find Me the fifty,
the forty,
the ten,
and all will be forgiven.”

But when the angels came
to my father, the evidence
had not been collected.

Father was frightened when
the guilty gathered in the doorway,
clamouring for the angels’ blood
and asking to be blinded.

And yet, it was hatred,
not fatherly love,
that spared my sister and I;
it was the wicked,
not the just,
who refused our blood.

And later, when Mother
had turned to stone and
Father was blind with drink,
it was

the righteous man
who found his way to our beds,

swelling our bellies
with children to
rebuild the cities.

One thought on “VII. DON’T

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