The Levite frowns at my offering:
Blemish, he says. I see none, but
can you disagree with his authority? It is woven
into the linen veil of the temple mount.
His hand waves me away, rejecting
what I have chosen for slaughter.
Bleating, I am helpless as a beast watching
the eternal flame flicker upon the altar.
Wordlessly I lead my lamb
a stone’s throw away from the mercy seat:
my beloved blushes as I search
for the spot perceived by the priest.
My fingers find no burr within the wool,
no broken bones. The only defect is
my imperfect faith in the correctness
of the Levite’s choice.
The priest retreats into the sweet smoke
and frankincense he calls duty. Secretly
I wonder, Can ground be hallowed
in the shadow of a broken law?
Come, see now the mount with holy sight:
its inner court obscenely varicose
with congealed fat. I delight
no more in the blood of bullocks.
My first fruits leads me beyond the wall.
Clean nor common are we, unburnt
after all the weary miles traveled
Sons of Levi, what makes an offering
righteous? I do not turn, but hear
the whirring of a swarming cloud:
the fervor of four hundred and fifty prophets