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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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Linda Dickman
Linda Dickman
Jun 03, 2023

So often, I feel the way that your poem expresses. I look at those specific folks. I pray for them. I notice that sometimes, when they are low, they call upon a believer for an open ear, a hug, some kind of reassurance. This poem gave me such encouragement. Thank you.

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tftuleja
May 10
Replying to

Thanks for this kind response, Linda. I'm happy the poem hass been of some help to you. And I think you're right that behind the rancor of (some) atheists' public posture there's a sense of unresolved longing. Avanti! Tad

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