A Kingdom Curtained

What is this business

Of Kingdom coming?

Have we not killed off

Our wicked want of kings

In that bloody satire of Bastille?

And don't we hate to wait

For anything these days?

Long lines and red lights,

The fearful dreams of our times?

So why to pray or say or summon

Something late and aged,

Encumbering?

We are a modern and sufficient people,

Too sophisticated and self-contained

For something so medieval

As a king.

Castles and crowns

Are but rusty museum trinkets,

But who is the marquis du jour?

And what if thrones remain

While jesters attain

A less majestic rule?

What if the primitive things

Of worship and reigning,

Courtship and hangings,

Remain unseen,

An inch beneath

The flimsy topsoil of our sciencing?

'Twas a hasty burial indeed,

Nay a farce,

A great exchange of the great Dunce;

Perhaps this modern state

Is an Atlantis 

Of our own deluded losing,

Lost for mere amusing,

Our temple built firm

In the sacred soil

Of choice and choosing;

We're a lost city

In faux utopian robes.

We're dreamers deceived

By an image of grand arrival,

Thinking we have built something sweet

And neat,

A reverie to be believed in,

But what if our tower up and up,

From dreary, weary Babel,

Is perchance just upside down,

Meaning we're miners underground,

Unknowing,

Mistaking ash for air,

Seeing through eyes glazed white,

Mistaking darkness of a grave for light?

What, dare we ask,

Has come so near

As to warrant such acclaim?

How are our orphans,

Our sick,

Our lame?

Are not our pharaohs

And pharisees the same?

No, no, we are nothing new;

No trophy is due,

We're as blind as all

The olden ages' seers and sages;

We are kingless coliseum builders,

For truth once more

Has stumbled in the public square.

Kingdom come

Remains a better phrase

Than all our wisest claims.

Undone,

Our cityscape fading would be grace.

If the glimmer and sheen

Is falsely seen

And Hell is just as near as ever,

Then "Kingdom Come!"

Is the mountaintop before us;

It is our height of humility

To attain.

Grace would be words of weakness

On our lips,

Pleading for another reign,

An Other's rule,

A castle built 

With living bricks.

Grace would be awakening

To face again

The lions in this den

That we have dug.

The victor's flag,

By grace before us waving,

Consists in being real,

And seeing clear;

The royal banner

Is an unveiling of the unreal.

Would but the curtain falter,

Undone

Within our sturdy city walls,

And could we then

Repent

Before the altar,

And let the empty fall?

Alas, but at last,

There is a Kingdom come

Sleeping here beneath us.