The Prodigal and His Brother

You can’t see it clearly,
you don’t even know
the emptiness of all of it,
cause you’re so caught up
in the afterglow
of everything you’ve conquered
of everyone you’ve bought,
the arms of empty strangers,
the love of all your stuff
that even now disintegrates,
gets beaten up and scuffed.
For all your fancy shoes,
new coat, new hat, new shirt,
you’re naked on the inside
and caked in your own dirt.
Fill up on all your
trifles. Consume all that you can.
Nothing but the best for you,
nothing but the shiniest
will do for you, oh man.
Dare anyone stop you
from filling every void
of the soul that you have
traded for the world
you have enjoyed?
For all your hands
are grasping, for all that you
can hold,
you’re emptying like
a circling drain.
You’re never fully
Given blessing
after blessing
and glory before your face,
you’ve opted out of grasping
every chance you have for grace.
But you can’t see the glory.
You’re blind and
deaf and dumb
and you’re numb
to the feel
of the blessing of the hands
that long to love you,
love you long and real.
You bite the hands that feed
you and
bruise the hands that heal.
You kiss the mouths of strangers
and honest lips despise,
you strip yourself of dignity
and clothe your guilt in lies.
No rich cologne could
ever mask your
shit coated veneer.
But, child of God,
you’re not so far
or dirty
or lost
or alone
that heaven itself won’t rend its clothes,
know nakedness
and want
and emptiness
and loneliness
and all the things you fear…
No you’re not so far away that
heaven can’t come near.

You never left
Your father’s house,
You played by rules
And kept your hands
So clean.
You followed creed
And family precedent
In every prayer and
Faithful deed.
You sang the songs
And danced along
The narrow road
And ate the bread
And bowed your head.
You worked and toiled
With reverence and fight,
But not with spite,
The chains that
You knew would just
Entangle like a snare
Out there
Where devils
Permeate the air,
And lie in wait to
Decimate like crouching
Lions at the gate.
You stayed beside him
And held his hand
As he cried
And watched his
Other pride and joy
cast all and everything
For whores and things
And diamond rings
To reap a whirlwind
But how it burns
When he returns,
And open arms
Fling wide.
When running foolish
Like a child, through
Mud and filth he’ll
Pass, he makes
A joke out of himself
To welcome a hopeless,
Used up
Your feigned delight
In sacrifice was
Empty as a tomb
painted white and
And placed in a sacred room
That has just
Been claimed as party
Town for the dirtiest guy
Your perfect coffin,
Nice and neat,
Is a table now laid
Out with the richest
Bread and finest wine
On which the
Dirty one will dine.
And the place that was
Your home
Feels now more like
Your cage as
You wriggle
And you squirm
And give way to the rage.
And the bitterness
Like a plant that grows
And then shrivels again
Because it was
Eaten by a worm.

You might be the lost son… The question is, which lost son are you?


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