Tribunal


What are the first words I’ll say
After I die,
When I have awakened into the afterlife,
Still possessing this eternal self that I am?

All the details of my most recent incarnation
Sharpened somehow by my passing,
Stripped of repression.

What will I say
When all things undone,
All obligations unfulfilled,
All unrealized ambitions and dreams,
All my weaknesses,
All my sins,
Present themselves for explanation why,
Why they were willfully ignored,
Buried,
Considering the generous amount of years granted.

I see myself confronted,
Standing before some kind of tribunal,
All my memories fully restored.
I gasp for breath
And try to speak.


~ Russ Allison Loar
© All Rights Reserved

Your First Major Sin


So, there it is,
Your first sin,
Your first major sin,
A profound distinction,
For to be born is to be full of sin,
Not biblical sin,
Just everyday garden-variety sin
Born of infantile ignorance,
A kind of sin we all are born with,
Sin that is easily corrected and forgiven,
Innocent sin without intentional malice,
Part of the transition from childhood
We all are called upon to make.

So there it is,
Your first major sin,
The kind that breeds shameful regret,
That sparks a sudden sadness,
Born of the realization
That this is the end of your stainless self,
Once so defiantly pure.

Now, you can no longer be so sanctimonious.
Now, you pray earnestly for your troubled soul.
Now, you join the human race.


~ Russ Allison Loar
© All Rights Reserved

This Place


If I am humble,
I can take all insults,
All personal affronts,
In stride.

But when I believe in the illusion of myself
As an all-knowing, superior being,
Every imagined disrespect ignites my rage,
A rage which will not be calmed
Until revenge has cleansed my troubled soul.

The angels of tolerance,
The demons of anger,
Always close,
Contending,
Here on this ancient planet,
This place of good and evil
Where we struggle still.


~ Russ Allison Loar
© All Rights Reserved

The Question


I know there are some
Who ask if there is a soul.

Yet is it not a surprising question?
As if someone turned to you,
Stopped you on a crowded city sidewalk
And asked: Do you believe in the body?

Belief comes after the fact.

Yes, I know,
We cannot photograph the soul
Or slip a fragment of it under a microscope.

Yet the very idea of spiritless being
Causes something in me to recoil,
Something that cannot deny its own existence,
Something I call,
If I must,
The soul.


~ Russ Allison Loar
© All Rights Reserved