Saturday, 1 August 2020

Likha George, Poetry 2020 Longlist

The Crosier

The hooked staff is pastoral

So is the curled top of a young fern

Surmounted by a Cross or cruz

Shepherd or Abbot, does it matter?


The shepherd's crook stood for kingship 

And the flail for the fertility of the land

Attributes of the deity Osiris 

Insignia of pharaoic authority.


Chasubles, copes, cassocks

Vestments, entitlements, privileges

Crook stylized, is a symbol unique

Of eminence and authority.


Symbol of the coercive dominion:

Shepherd of his flock, the potentate; 

Herding and restraining the laity

To every whim and passion alike.


Novices in habits, greens of furled ferns

Coercion demeans, suicide the escape;

Systemic tales of lust, enslaving

Power of the crosier, not consent, mattered.


The spur and stimulus appeared a day

In the riposte of a vindicated Medusa,

Satanic, debauched insolence chastised,

The crosier lay broken along with its holder.

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