Beyond the realm of human sight
 Where daylight struggles with the night,
A banquet waits for guests reborn
 On tables carved from twisted thorn,
Each draped in linen, soiled and torn
 And monogrammed with hoof and horn
Where candles flicker with delight,
 Confounding with uncertain light.

Each place is set with polished knives
 For spreading strife in others’ lives,
But not a smear of shame impugns
 Reflections cast in silver spoons,
While forks adorned with ancient runes
 Impale the planets, stars, and moons
To pierce the trouble fate contrives
 Until no faith in God survives.

Surrounding sheets of flame reveal
 Bright shadows often deemed unreal–
The fire roars…
 The thunder claps…
The Golden Rule abruptly snaps…
 Fond memories of blessings lapse…
Old habits rise as tempting traps…
 Alas! The dark cannot conceal
The entrées of this hellish meal.

Stale platitudes and tired clichés
 Are heaped on tarnished serving trays,
And tongues are loosened to malign
 With bitter dregs of jealous brine,
While tepid mixing bowls combine
 Some half-baked truths with softened spine
To marinade raised hands of praise
 And boil salvation as they braise.

To drown the scent of fragrant prayer,
 The stench of gossip fills the air;
In candy dishes, thick with flies,
 Squirm lying tongues and haughty eyes
Beside some pompous sheepskin pies
 Which make men smart but seldom wise,
Then finger bowls of thick despair
 Are offered as a final snare.

The wine is spilled to spoil the bread
 As blazes fade on those misled
Until the light is quite diffused
 Which leaves the frightened guests confused
With famished faiths and egos bruised…

 …Yet no one prays to be excused.

Take heed! The righteous never dread
 This banquet of the living dead.