I may not be a famous man, Or one who makes a hero’s plans. I do not have a Ph.D. Or Pulitzers in poetry. But still I see some trouble here (I want to be exact and clear); I see great evil in the land, Corruption hard to understand.
They’re killing babies left and right,
And I’m opposed with all my might.
A baby has the right to live,
To grow and laugh, to cry and give.
A baby isn’t just a rag
To toss into a bloody bag.
A baby’s us, she’s you and me,
With head and heart, with thumbs and knees.
When zygotes form within their wombs,
God forbid those wombs be tombs.
God says those lives must thrive and grow,
To see the worlds of sun and snow,
To lie upon their mothers’ breasts,
To learn and play, to work and rest.
To take those lives is no small crime,
A Holocaust that taints our time.
Soon the Lord will cast His pall:
May He have mercy on us all.
Beware that ox, or else your side will sport
A gash in it that you could drive a cart
Through, sir. This is unusual: For sheep,
Oxen, bird cages, tables, to be strewn
Outside the temple when they all belong
Inside so that we merchants can conduct
Our business, as we do at Passover
And other feasts, the prosperous times for us.
What am I doing out here with my sheep
And doves? I’ll tell you if you’ll help me keep
These brutes together while I feed the birds.
We merchants minded our own business while
The money-changers sat at tables where
They changed the coins from foreigners, who had
To pay for sacrificial animals
With shekels–they’re the only coins we take.
My lambs and doves are highest quality,
The perfect specimens for sacrifice
According to the Law, and I will charge
No more than what the market will accept.
A man needs to make a living, sir, to feed
His family, the worker deserves a wage,
Don’t muzzle the oxen while they thresh the corn.
I give my tithes and offerings, take care
Of neighbors when they need some help, my wife—
I’m true to her, I’ve made a covenant
With my own eyes not to cast them upon
A maiden, or to covet animals
My neighbors owns, his wife, his servants, or
Anything else, and for my righteous acts
Jehovah has expanded my domain:
A bigger house, more pastureland, more sheep,
Though I am not as important as you are
As caretaker of God’s Word and a guide
To men like me who need the Lord to steer
Them through the traps and thorns that block the path
To One who made the heavens and the earth,
To One who sent the rain to flood the earth,
To One who with his brilliance made the face
Of Moses shine so brightly that he had
To wear a veil, the people were so scared.
This interloper comes from nowhere, town
Up north with ten or twelve inhabitants,
And he presumes to tell you Pharisees
And Sadducees that you don’t follow God.
We Jews, entrusted with God’s law, we know
The way to God and we don’t block a soul
From knowing him. Today that man took cords
And bound them like a whip, a whip that stung
And took its share of blood, look at my back,
If you will, see the wound and the dried blood,
Is there no balm in Gilead? That man
Should cleanse himself before he seeks to cleanse
The temple, which is what he claimed that he
Was doing, the pretentious Nazarene
Born outside marriage to a peasant girl.
He should be whipped himself; I’ll count on you
And other leaders of our faith to charge
Him with a crime, give him the lashes, teach
Him justice from the temple he’s so fond
Of, and he’ll crawl back to his tiny town,
His tail between his legs, and let us be.
This was to be my biggest day all year,
With shekels that would buy my wife and son
As many gifts and treats as they desire:
I’ll take my sheep and doves, and scrounge for coins
From foreigners devoted to the Lord.
You say that you’ll do even more than whip The Great Pretender? He will take the curse, Crucified like the criminal he is. A satisfactory result, if you Persuade the Romans to pound him with nails And lift him up, as Moses raised the snake So that our ancestors in wilderness Would look at it and God would heal them. Mend
This business rift: I’ll back you ‘til the end.
Similarly, Deep Staters vigorously object to being kicked out their money-making Temple.