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Leland Waldrip

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A Lesser God
by Leland Waldrip

Tuesday, January 22, 2002
Rated "G" by the Author.
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Recent poems by Leland Waldrip
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Have you ever wondered at persons who profess “faith,” then participate wholeheartedly in the fruits of science as God’s domain (the Unknown) shrinks with each new scientific advance? (Actually, scientific advances tend to open the door to more mystery, but that is another story.)

If history says anything, anything at all,
Cumulative knowledge of this bright blue ball
Has pushed God back as ignorance shrunk,
And added older divinities to man’s tool trunk.

As knowledge shifts from unknown to known,
There’s less God the more facts we own.
Less unknown with each lesson learned.
Been that way since first campfire burned,
When man saw his world in fear and wonder,
Worshipped lightning, kneeled to thunder,

And deified sun’s blazing chariot of gold—
Sky riding godly hands fiery reins’d hold,
And whip ingot chargers with hellish glee,
Their trip must finish ‘fore night could be!

Gods to God, shedding knowledge still,
Man was learning well, but got his fill
Of the supernatural, idle gossip, wild rumor,
That ate at his soul and grew like a tumor,

Bade to heed clever magic tricks
If questions were too deep his mind to fix,
But rit was sworn: he’d be safe from harm
If done regularly, with all proper charm.

An epic battle on the human stage
Independent thinker vs. religious sage:
“Scientific method is the guide for me.”
“Never! Ancient writ I interpret for thee!”

I don’t know if this struggle will ever end,
Or show any abatement or declining trend.
Thinking man continues inventing things,
While religious folk love all that that brings—
The religious embrace what thinking’s wrought:
The lesser God their religion always fought.

Rappahannock Books

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Reviewed by TOMSDATTAR 11/9/2002
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