Far, far away said
the Hagia Sophia,
the Holy Wisdom;
the empress Zoe and
Marilyn Monroe
combine and recombine,
merge as one shape shifting
and changing,
barely showing the outline
of shapely legs
beneath a golden ornate robe
and then under the blown-up skirt
showing solid thighs
in all their glory;
the best arguments for
the afterlife betrayed
by earthly beauty,
the perilous flesh.

With this seemly display
heeding the gospel
goes by the board;
goddess, myth or whatever
she is or represents;
for humanity, cowering down below,
she’s a babe and a queen, both.

Far, far away snickers the snake,
safe in a stove;
old Satan, the father of lies,
seeing, watching,
inspired by her shape,
her divine, her earthly form,
to new wickedness
turns his mind,
thinking how easy it is;
how easily flesh
bends to his will.

Near and close, fools,
near and close
the both of them and
pay attention to both.

Still, be still
and listen;
it makes a difference.

The death watch,
still as a beetle,
in the garden wall;

make your choice.