The Tongue

A beast lives in us all. Each one
With virtues like a venomous snake bite:
Teeth sharp and hissing it comes from
Our heart and flesh: deadly as cyanide.
It builds bridges, and it crushes the soul and body;
It strengthens, and it weakens and divides.
Wisely, it can restore and bring harmony,
Or demonically twist truths into lies.

No wall too big, and no foe too strong
It is the weapon of choice.
It has the capacity to annihilate all day long,
And do your bidding at the sound of your voice.
The claws are ready; they are your eyes
Hunting down one by one like a lion.
You see nearby those that you despise
And they are what you pry on.

A scorpion that cannot help but sting,
A mantis just waiting for the prey.
Unprovoked it attacks to the death and clings
To the corpse, sucking all life away.
Too fast for diluting it soft,
It births roots in the blink of eye.
To tame it is to kill it and cut it off
And let the thing rot and die.

A fire in the water, a wolf in sheep clothing.
It is a temptress gently drawing you in,
So that you’re blind to it and not knowing
That what you’re doing is a sin.
Slender smooth and passion red,
Down it goes: the whips harsh crack.
Your didn’t see it, and now you’re stone dead
After stabbing yourself in the back.

Designed for life, perverted to kill,
Hastily it destroys the old and the young,
A beast we feed too happily at will:
The author of circumstances, The Tongue.

15th August, 2000

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