The Hands of Man

FEU Advocate
July 29, 2023 10:10

By Nathalie Melanio

Long, thin robes vanish amidst the thick of clouds,
Wings kept hidden below mortal clothes.
I was a seraph with looking apertures, now with hundreds omitted.
For God chastens those who call him a hypocrite. 

Flickering lamps draw shadows upon solid ground, 
Painted red by an artist behind the gun’s barrel,
Carrying a scrap of cardboard as the smoke clears.
He strokes his finger and jots down: “pusher ako, ‘wag tularan.”

But alas, dare he offered himself naked before Christ—
Hands pledged slaughter to another intertwined,
Throat clogged with lies scarcely repenting in shame.
Our father in heaven, hollowed has become of your name!

Distinguished martyrs rule the realm of sweetness and light,
Of what wretched souls eternally set ablaze aches to acquaint. 
Yet in land is where I've learned of sinners and saints in one;
A white Sepulcher wreaked through the hands of man. 

(Illustration by Alexandra Lim)