Sometimes It Takes a Lie

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Sometimes it takes a lie
to keep a religion. “It’s
merely a game,” they
told the priests–“how
we fast for days, then

cut a tall pole to climb.
How we costume and
dance. It means nothing,
how we chant in circles
and bleed chickens.

How we climb and fly
round and around in air.
Come, watch–it’s only
a game that gives us joy.”
(And, they didn’t say,

aloud, keeps the earth
going well, returned
to its right turning again.)
“Merely a game we play,
round and around in

thirteen and thirteen turns.
It’s a game–come watch,
priests. Be amazed” (how
sometimes it takes a lie
to keep your religion.)

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