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Gladys N. Koppole - The Renunciation

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The Renunciation

Before you indulge
in the act of renunciation,
what you renounce.
Have you lain on a bed
of combed-cobweb down
electing, instead, a bed of thorn?
Have you tasted ambrosia,
drunk the dew of the gods,
choosing instead dry bread and salt?
Have you flown with the eagles,
run with the wolves,
fleeted, gazelle-footed,
before wearing your shackles?
Have you heard loves whisper?
Felt its molten melting,
and its sharp, acid recall?
Feel it, ere you deny it,
for the celibates
thin cell.
Have you beaten and eaten
the flesh of the old dying bear,
betrayed the weeping and helpless,
who, in their dark night of grief,
called you friend?
Have you murdered the light
in your thought and your speech,
collected debts
you were never even owed?
Did you gamble for the dying
mans clothes, for his sandals
cast lots,
withheld the hydrating drink?
If youve withheld no approval,
neither murdered nor mocked,
never bargained for love,
or haggled for more than you've given,
killed nothing for pride,
nailed no one to a tree
there's little to renounce,
for theres little you've done
worth setting free.

Gladys N. Koppole

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