Those of no faith know you open this book
and all that seeps out will be puzzle and dust;
mud to the mind and a mist for the soul,
mutterings of mouths long lost.
Slaves to the faith know to open this book
is sweet invocation of structure and form,
laws, regulation, advice and rebuke;
the manual to a sacred norm.
Children of faith know you open this book
and what will pop out will be apples and slaughter,
fishes and miracles, murders – and men
picking up girls fetching water.
Students of faith know to open this book
starts up a dance with the rabbis of history
dancing with scrolls down the halls of the dead
darkly, face to face, with mystery.
Servants to faith know you open this book
looking for rest and finding duty,
looking for reasons and finding meaning,
looking for sense and finding beauty,
looking for peace and finding work,
looking for ease and finding loss,
looking for news and finding hope,
looking for life and finding a cross.
Look in this mirror.
What you see there, read and absorb;
if you dare.
© Lucy Berry