Sunday, March 25, 2018

Greasing Our Palms

A sideways glance at gods on Palm Sunday
Gods are souls for whom the usual varieties of life
will never do. They must refuse to choose our miracle:
they recuse themselves from having any sway in any way
in our empirical attempts to navigate mortality because
they’re implicated at the heart of why we had to take it on.
They are prime movers in a force amounting to an irresistible
persuasion that death must become the pivotal recourse
for incarnation, because without it there would be no flesh
or breath. Mortal beings are the sole anointed ones upon
whom gods bestow the influential rhythms that we know
of anguish, love, suspense – boredom, sadness, joy, discovery
and disappointment – lassitude and irrepressible desire
with its lusts and musts: the trust that blesses us when
spoken, and eviscerates when broken, so at last we grasp
what more is and what less is. Death is central to the engine
we call life. But gods make sure we’ll never be inured to it –
we never will catch onto the subversiveness of evening
and of dawn, even when we’re told as if right out, as we are
told in fables such as this, that evening, dawn and gods
and we are phantoms: myths which fog the truth. Will we
ever know the truth? We are the truth. What could it mean
to know it? Being it, how could we not? To know is not
to say it. Gods grease our palms, liberally sacrificing starring
roles, giving us mortality so we can play it, remanding their
obliquities to fairytales beyond the portals through which
only mortals can gain entry, to work out ways to die and to be
born that can be borne. That’s the deal with Jesus: his self-
erasure frees us: reveals forthwith that he’s a myth so
we’ll believe we’re real. Gods and their glories are stories.
Don’t expect to see one. Unless it is your turn to be one.

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