Poetry: From an ancient collector of Proverbs, re-dug

Steppe Mammoth at the Australian Museum, Sydney. — April Pethybridge on Unsplash

            And, regarding Exodus 28:30

Knowing themselves to be seen
as black mastodons –
pushing up like mountains – they come,
Urim and Thummim,
knee-thunking, thundering,
toed in 48-Karat gold,
waking mammoths from the girdle
of Aaron, aged
in ephod blue and scarlet,
twelve-gemmed to carry explicable

   Tenders of meadows between
   those mountains
   judge their own handiwork now,
   since dwelling in lion & lamb
   green Pax.

   Make it known:
   two here, three there,
   spirit-nodding agreement to end
   human anatomies for meat.

   Listen at larded chitterling thaw
   in shored up arctic hearts
   allegedly pure.

   So much paper past, painted
   with so pale a protest
   on fluttered human things
   laid still, skewered
   in butchers’ paper magna carta.

   Now as we lift diseased bald eagles
   from tundrad north nests,
   we work
   for the Child from the manger to return,
   so health in the earth breaks free.

Sylvia Gross Bubalo

Sylvia Gross Bubalo (1928-2007), artist and poet, shaped by her Franconia (Pa.) Mennonite context, was ahead of her time when Read More

Sign up to our newsletter for important updates and news!