The Temple Will Be Empty When We Wake
A cent for a soul
Black market that grows green in our belly
We taught them how to hang a crucifix
The shorter side is the head of the saviour
So it stands aloft, pointing north.
It astounds me how black candles put out darkness
Like a lizard eating the carcass of a crocodile-
Her sibling from another mother.
We sold them little lights in burning wax
And told them skulls on crossings are glyphs of Satanism.
The war is not carnal
Not the clashing of metals and throwing of daggers
We taught them how to stay up at night
Speaking strange languages, screaming and groaning
For sometimes God feigns deafness for silence.
We told them hell is a dungeon of pythons
Knowing men fear reptiles
And sinners are dry leaves floating around fire
Someday, they shall merry in claws of flame
So we taught them how to love hating the flesh.
Bring all treasures to the holy place
We read them lies from the book of truth
Metamorphose into ticks under their furs
Eating them of the sweetness from their sweats
We pray before we prey!
But someday, in decades to come
They shall begin to see
That God is neither beauty nor beast
In the fanaticism of religion
& in the tongues of false prophets
Then when we shall sleep, and wake to an empty temple.
On your road to Damascus
I am a soldier walking in the body of a poet.
I save cities from boys like you.
A raven perched on my winlast night,
It carried your name and a story
Of how your mother ran into water when you left
Hoping you’ll take in a bit of her every time you thirst.
Your fathers were no better men;
They bored holes in their hearts and filled them with rum
So they could crumble the bottles into pieces
And throw them at the masses all night.
But it wasn’t long before the city was set on fire.
They all sat by a river, mourned and watched their Babylon fall.
Every wall in hell has its shadow on your palm.
I saw you squeezed them on the heart of a young girl
Whom you bruised, and led into womanhood.
I watched you grip them on what was never yours
And dipped it into a purse full of lies and deceit.
I saw devil every time you left a loophole on your skin.
On your road to Damascus, I am your saviour.
You will not make another Babylon
From this Zion!
Michael Ace is a Writer and Poet from Ibadan, Nigeria. He has authored two poetry chapbooks titled ‘Sermon From A Stammerer’ and ‘Scarlet Silk’.
His poems have also appeared or forthcoming on Praxis Magazine, Brittlepaper, Lunaris Review, Khalari Review, PIN Journal, WRR, Tuck Magazine, African Writers, Wildsound Review, Peregrine Reads and elsewhere.
A Christian and lover of true Gospel. He is a Computer Scientist and Programmer but with a great passion for Art and Literature.
He is the Editor and CEO of ACEworld Publisher.