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  • Tad Tuleja

To an Atheist

by Tad Tuleja

What does it profit you, Sir, to needle

those down on their knees?

What’s the payoff for slinging that sly smile

against their door,

that Voltaire grin fixed at aloof

that pillories the priest

and sends the child clinging to its nurse

weeping to bed?

Is there not enough misery afoot

to check your dagger,

to make you halt for one moment

of irrational mercy?

And should you prove correct, what then?

What laurels will you drag

to our common destination, to the earth

that governs us all

in the end? What tale will be told

of your passage here

devoted to ensuring that innocents

abandon hope?

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