modern oracle waits open-mouthed
for supplicants’ offerings
for fresh hearts to tremble
as life’s balance is revealed
a whisper of esoteric marks
on paper slips the size
of a pilgrim’s palm

screen like a holy bush
burning, but never consumed,
divine commands flicker
thou shalt not deceive
thou shalt not ask amiss
mene, mene, tekel, upharsin
you have been weighed
and found wanting
depart, ye worker of iniquity

but let the righteous
bow before me now
they who have patiently tithed
persistently leaned upon me
let them ask in faith
and i will succor them
see how my countenance glows
hear the spirit’s quiet voice
observe and marvel
as from the bowels of mercy
deliverance is granted
wants are supplied
each measured heavenly gift
inscribed in boldest script

“in god we trust”

Zetetic separator

—j.lewis is an internationally published poet, musician, and nurse practitioner, loves kayaking and photographing the areas around his home in California. Poems have appeared online and in print in numerous journals from California to Nigeria to the UK. His first collection of poetry and photography, a clear day in october, was published by Empire & Great Jones Little Press in June 2016, and is available on Amazon. A new chapbook, every evening is december, was published by Praxis Magazine in February, 2018.

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