Giornata 4

An old husband’s tale reckons that witches are children 
of sexless angels and their human eunuchs, angels 
whose self-restraint was inversely proportional to the power 
to silence their victims. Papa’s maybes of a Zeus-like
ravishment from above. Immaculate. Paul said women
should wear an “authority” on their heads, by which he meant a veil,
like a force field to protect them from lustful angels. Adam
copped angel lust from those self-same freaky mayflies
who by turns learned their grift at God’s extensive
digit bulbing like molten glass at the end of a blowpipe.
God got his from Greeks. Thus completes, like a network
of shell companies, the history of qualified
immunity. Every man should learn to balance a set of books
that looks like an anvil–instead of a veil–on our heads
for posture in the figurative sense, standing in God’s eyes
where God, like the future, is female—a prophylactic
against patriarchy, a cork stopper in the mouth of a gun.

Copyright © 2024 by Gregory Pardlo. Originally published in Poem-a-Day on January 11, 2024, by the Academy of American Poets.