Thursday, November 8, 2012

"Ulterior Motives"

Doubt fills my heart when I hear your words—
excuses offered upon the alter
I no longer believe
Cynicism flows within my bloodstream
my hair prickles on the back of my neck—
warning, warning, warning, warning
Take care

You promise paradise and salvation—
redemption and forgiveness
for my trespasses
as you sin again and again
Proffering your version of God—
distorted through your visions

You raise your voice in righteousness—
indignant with my humanism
you pray for my soul
You—so callous and uncaring
of all suffering
but your own

Copyright 2011 Elizabeth Abrams Chapman

Sunday, November 4, 2012

"Sterling Sliver"


Part of a set brought out for special occasions
showing guests wholeness and belonging—
            matching, complementary, complete
            “All for one, and one for all!”
The family motto reiterated in ritualistic chant

Part of a set displayed on holidays
buffed with care into sparkle and gleam
            hiding flaws and secrets
            under layers of protective polish
Impressing outsiders and onlookers

Part of a set exhibited for ceremony
identical in rigid expectations
            proof of continuity and unity
            loaded with traditional roles
Indistinguishable utensils of the matriarch

Copyright 2011 Elizabeth Abrams Chapman