Splitting the Rib

Do you like the iconography?
Do like those without bodies, then. Gods
travel the world by conquest, riding
on thoughts, in traditions. Honour men’s

vendettas venerating their felled
enemies’ wailing memories, prayer
hands ending ambiguity through
conflict. Death’s fists obliterating

dissent sharing a bed, and sharing
ideas, wading the persuading
gossip pool of gospel, pervasive
fiction gifting them eternal gloss

to tongue over carved lips of marble
living. Apart falls an art’s work when
hidden from one’s love, for on lovers
heaven calls, thunders into hung heads

tempest rebukes if elusive, if
running from a truth’s retribution.
Don’t test them, then. Inevitable
an unacknowledged symbol’s resolve.

Splitting the rib, bitten lyrics ripped
from hymns laugh of ink dripped by livers
vultures peck, punishments on mountains
tipped imbalances favouring sin

re-word with curses, maledictions
remembrancing one’s exiled versions.
When one vision’s in two eyes, twinned lines
harmonize conflicting religions.

Trust, instead, trust in steady hands tasked
with fashioning questions every
iconographer demands be asked
by viewers of his masks, gods’ answers.