Where Shelley's atheism would find faith
Today, no theist verse would find a home
Outside religious magazines -- a wraith
Of narrowmindedness erects a dome
To make sure spirit-feeling will not roam.
The nyads, dryads do not have a place
To dwell -- we cannot find the spirits' land --
Our poets, editors would find disgrace
Among their peers if life should not be bland
Upon the page as atheists demand.
Heroic gods could scarcely grace the page
In anything but reference, irony -
To dare be earnest, that would but enrage
The village atheist -- he'll make you flee
From his harangues, his every empty plea.
And God the Father, God the King won't reign
Much more than human kings or emperors --
And why would any atheist dare deign
To deem a theme on him should open doors
When they have existential verse on whores?
The fuzzy deist God, the cosmos' voice
That sparked existence just to step aside
Is still too much -- in Him you can't rejoice
Without sly ridicule -- they won't abide
Until you have confessed that God has died.
And that now leaves us with the blankest verse
Of petty observations, with our eyes
Cast down upon the ground to see what's worse
In life and humankind, that but denies
That we are anything but food for flies.
But if you dare to lift your eyes, the glow
Will blind you right before you see the sun,
And seeing beauty you will finally know
What virtue needs, and all the damage done
By failing to aim high to reach the one.