This is the end, the prophet told us.
His spittle hung from a low-slung lip.
His hair drifted around his bald skull
like a benediction.
And the people came two by two
to lay their offerings at the feet of the old god
—as though anything the gods had done had ever brought us good.
I hid in the trees and
watched them cling to that beloved
Later I came down and sat before the god
who lay face-up on his altar, mouth wide as a corpse’s,
positioned so that it would catch the rain.
I sat down and prayed
—it was the least and the most I could do
—and the god spoke:
don’t you see, don’t you see
I am slaughtered
what more could I possibly do?