PoetryReligion

Say Anything

I don’t know if you’ve noticed, but there aren’t a lot of African American atheists, this poem responds to religions hold on the African American populace.

Say Anything

It distresses me how tenaciously
my people hold on to Jesus,
when God, Jesus, Jehova and Allah
never fell from the lips of my ancestors
as they were trapped in the bellies of boats
bringing them across the Atlantic,
raping them of the only home they ever knew,
these same gods enabled our enslavers
to see us as nothing but chattel, below human beings,
because their books,
falsely attributed to the hands of gods,
were written by feeble minded men
who never walked more than
100 miles outside of their villages,
men who had no knowledge of distant lands
containing people who did not resemble them,
distant lands containing people who resemble me.
My ancestors were victims of a misunderstanding,
victims of an arrogance that allowed men
to lack even the will to hate those they enslaved,
because hate is something reserved for equals,
and their gods gave them domain over land and animals,
so if my ancestors only ever seen as animals
in these men’s eyes,
why would they waste energy hating me and my kind?
My ancestors prayed to different gods
who, as far as I can tell,
never lifted a finger to help them
who, as far as they could tell,
never lifted a finger to help them,
so it only figures that they
would adopt the god of their enslavers
who, as far as I can tell
has never lifted a finger to help us,
has never attempted to dissuade his followers
from practicing in human trafficking,
in fact a careful reading of
Leviticus chapter 25, verse 44-46
instructs the chosen ones to buy bondsmen and bondmaids
from neighboring nations,
tells them that the offspring
of these purchased people
should be passed down in perpetuity,
but that they should not rule
over their brethren in the same manner.
Well mannered men and cultured women
would attend slave auctions
on sunny Sunday afternoons
fresh from church,
because these were social events,
watching men, women and children
sold to the highest bidder,
bitter feelings formed deep
in the bellies of black men and women
as they watched their families sold away,
powerless to rebel,
compelled by Sunday’s sermon
to honor their masters,
today’s reading comes from
Colossians chapter 3, verse 22
which tells you to obey
those who are your earthly masters
in singleness of heart,
fearing the lord.
Whatever your task, work heartily…
and I can hardly believe that we
have shaken off the shackles of slavery,
and yet remain shackled willingly
to the religion of our former masters
accepting their assertions
of a loving and benevolent god,
as they aimed pistol and whip at our naked flesh
accepting their assertions
of an omniscient and omnipotent god,
as they aimed community and belonging
at our raped raw feelings of being,
with us refusing,
still, to confront the notion that a
god who is supposed to be
caring and compassionate allowed one culture
to enslave another for economic gain,
that an omniscient god would have foresaw
the downfall of adam and eve,
would not have given a serpent the power of speech
would not have so easily left temptation within reach,
that an all powerful deity
has allowed atrocities like Haiti to happen,
at times being given credit,
refusing to edit the record
to reflect a history more favorable
to belief in a deity,
that an all powerful god
allows evil to be present
in a world filled with what are supposed to be
his favored creations.
My ancestors prayed to different gods
who, as far as I can tell,
never lifted a finger to help them
who, as far as they could tell,
never lifted a finger to help them,
so it only figures that they would adopt the god
of their enslavers
who, as far as I can tell,
has never lifted a finger.

Victor Harris © 2009

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Victor

Victor

Trained in the ways of critical thinking and skepticism at a young age by his mother, Victor then learned the ways of atheism during ten years of catholic schooling. He has been a Dj since 1996. a performance poet since 1999, a cheesecake baker and entrepreneur since 2003, and a race car driver since he figured out which pedal was the accelerator, which pedal was the brake and which pedal was the clutch, there is a rumor that there is a video of him doing these four pursuits at the same time...but it is as of yet unsubstantiated.

He is also an avid Formula 1 fan, and would like to add: Go Lewis.

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