Monday, September 05, 2005

Poety Stuff - Scales

On the day He was to create justice
God got involved in making a dragonfly
And lost track of time
– Anne Carson

Justice is a woman
We clothe in folds of bronze or stone
Daughter of the Earth and Sky

When I was little I wanted everything
To be fair
My mother’s voice: life isn’t fair

I made a list of things lacking fairness




We stopped looking to God for justice
After Cain and Abel
After the Flood

After Sodom and Gomorrah
After forty years wandering in the desert
Or maybe after He killed His own son

That wasn’t really
The kind of justice
We had in mind

So we forged an idol based on older deities
Birthed before monotheism
And omnipotence were invented

Ma’at in Egypt
Themis in Greece
Justitia in Rome

Justice is a woman
We clothe in folds of bronze or stone
We give her a sword and some scales

To hold at arms length
The balancing kind
Because they look better

She doesn’t have shoes
And sometimes
There is a snake

We blindfold her
Not so things will be fair
But so she will not weep

At the things we do in her name
Drowning us
In her ancient tears