I Swear

A stranger stands before me

with objective eyes prescribed

only to officers of the law.


He bows his head to a thick book

clutched in his hands, his protection of the

literature overwhelming.


The judge speaks:

Place your right hand on the Bible

and raise your left.


I imagine a silver, mystical hand

attempting to clasp my own,

entombing me in proof.


I fail to succumb to

His preaching.

I don’t believe in God.


Wretched judgement

swallows me in a blister of

infallible appraisal –


like trees that invent ground

from which they grow.

Damnation is a lie.


Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth

and nothing but the truth,

so help you God?


I swear away my life,

a façade to an athlete of the truth.

I open my eyes and state my deceit:


I do.

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