Gnostic Gullible

They have power to shut the sky, that no rain may fall during the days of their prophesying, and they have power over the waters to turn them into blood, and to smite the earth with every plague, as often as they desire.
          —Rev 11:61


An origin in two versions,
two verses into this book and—
spoiler alert—I can tell this
is a gospel which does not end

well. The good news is that, since fear
sells, worrying it will fall in
with the wrong crowd—into the wrong
hands—is the wrong way, my dear friends,

to go about it, lest someone’s
lost prophet make more scandalous
than it is profitable sins
this thing sells. Things less impressive,

less palatable than what went
down when Pilate let ravenous


people do to Jesus what grim
deeds they did in the other, more
canonical anecdotes. Hits
over- and outspoken, ancient

is that mob mentality which
breeds pages obscene obscuring
decency as easily as
these. Sayings giving me love when

I never needed to question
independence or believe in
needing being needed now more than
ever, to see what I managed

to go without. By words urged on
to pursue and perceive wishes


my eyes refused before to want
to seek, to grant these visions more
credence for once. In the loudest
crowd there seethes much of what we tend

most times to cop out and call god
crying out of wild defiance
too violently to be calmed
or coddled at all by peace. Wind

and sea meet there ’til its roar bends
with insurmountable force, root
through to branch—spoiling each curling
leaf ’til it turns black with rot sick

enough to curse life’s tree worse than
its wisdom did Eve—false Gnostics.

1“The Revelation to John (The Apocalypse)”, [Chapter] 11[, Verse] 6, in “The New Testament” of The Holy Bible: Revised Standard Version: Catholic Edition, published at Oxford by Oxford University Press in 2004; page 1228.