ΤΩ ΑΓΝΩΣΤΩ ΘΕΩ
(The Unknown God)
© 2017 Vernon Miles Kerr
You, who are said to silently sit behind the veil
Parsimoniously meting out indulgences or pain,
Blessings or cursings,
Who are said to be aloof—at times angry, vindictive,
Who are said to be obsessed with what we wear or eat,
And other libels:
How do you bear us?
We pour through the “holy books,”
All the while repressing a nagging doubt.
Are all of these your ancient words,
or have we created you in our own image,
In order to fill an empty soul,
In order to fill a page,
In order to control others?
You, whose utterances are the stars and galaxies,
The green Earth—
The solitary Earthly creature
who even notices the nightly wheel
Of sparkling brilliance
And then wonders:
What is your purpose for us?
There must be some purpose.
How could the magnitude of that which was uttered
Be noticed by such a tiny creature as we
Living on a dust mote,
But fashioned with no purpose?
Or do you create on a whim, as we do,
With little reason other than entertainment?
You have created us from temporary matter,
On a finite plane with finite resources,
On a planet of natural, unending war
Where nothing is gained without concurrent loss,
And nothing lives but that something else dies:
Are we merely entertainment for you,
Like the rise and fall of a movie plot?
Do you create crisis just to see how we handle it?
Or is life on this planet merely divine aversion therapy
For immortal souls?
Will you question us in the afterlife?
Billions of us have wondered;
Billions will wonder when we are gone.
Or is it—as the libels go,
“His purposes are beyond our understanding?”
If they are, then you are not only “unknown”
But also unknowable,
And this exercise has been vain