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Daniel Brick

Bronze Star - 5,330 Points (June 10,1947 / St. Paul MN)

Roses and Flames An Angel speaks


An angel speaks:

Poor demon,
poorer than the poorest beast,
I see you writhe in pain
spinning in mid space
out of control
I hover just outside
the shimmer
that marks the gates of heaven.
For a million years
I have never left heaven.
For a million years
you have never entered heaven.

Poor demon,
outside heaven
I smell the stench of ordinary air
like you, like you, like you.
Here are the roses of heaven.
Their scent is the breath of God's love.
God told me to give them
to you.
I thought they were a gift
from God.
But
when the roses touched your hide
they flared into fire,
flames that scorched
you
already scorched by hell's fire.

Poor demon,
poor beast,
I am poorer
for having seen you suffer.
Please, God, let me return.
Blind me in heaven's shimmer
to the poor demon
poor like me, like me, like me.

Submitted: Thursday, May 08, 2014
Edited: Saturday, September 20, 2014

Topic of this poem: narrative


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Poet's Notes about The Poem

This is a sentimental poem I wrote in 1991. When I recently re-read it, it reminded of a poem I wrote last winter, the Sufi-inflected THREE ANGELS ON EARTH, which I am confident no one would call sentimental. I avoid sentimentality like a literary plague! Essentially, it means that the writer is creating feelings in the reader in an unfair way, taking short cuts, using hyperbole, writing carelessly. It shows a cavalier attitude toward integrity.
B-U-T when I re-read it, I saw the angel who speaks as a child of eternity, and the language seemed consistent with that identity. It's obvious I'm conflicted about posting this poem, so I'll leave my 'apologia' at that.

The roses which become flames is taken from the closing passage of Goethe's FAUST, PART TWO. When the devils try to stop the ascent of Faust's soul into heaven, angels drop heavenly roses on the accompanying angels and redeemed souls. OK, fine. But when the roses fall on the pursuing devils, they burst into flames, scorching them and scattering them. It's a clever incident. The message seems to be: for the just, everything is blessed and safe; for the unjust, just the opposite.

Comments about this poem (Roses and Flames An Angel speaks by Daniel Brick )

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  • Rookie - 222 Points Marie Shine (5/29/2014 7:20:00 AM)

    As I read this exquisitely executed write, Daniel, in my mind for some strange reason, I 'felt' as if the Angel was seeing the other (darker) side of her/himself and the torture of that darkness was unbearable for her/him! Hmmm... Wonder where that came from? Heaven and Hell and Purgatory and Limbo have all to do with religion, and as a Spiritualist, I know that the world of Spirit from where we came holds no such places. Hang on... I'm getting there... Heaven is NOT a place, it IS a state of mind and in Spirit Hell, Purgatory and Limbo do NOT exist. There is NO devil, he was a very clever contraption made up to put fear and dread into people by the church, because that was how the church ruled - through fear and NOT love as Jesus portrayed in his lifetime. There is no such thing as a good life or a bad life, we are given A life and it is up to us to make it good for us. There is no such thing as 'sin', we have learning experiences, that is why we are here. Everything we do either benefits us spiritually or is a life lesson for us and it is the hardest, most difficult times which we learn most from. Life lessons will keep coming until we have learned the particular life lesson we are meant to learn. Everybody who comes into our life, does so for a reason, either to be a blessing or a lesson and there are so many people who have taught us lessons in our lifetime, that we owe each and every one of them a debt of eternal gratitude. Without them, we would never have advanced spiritually. Jesus was not a Catholic, Muhammad was not a Muslim and Buddha was not a Buddhist, they were all teachers of love. But, back to your poem, Daniel, and please forgive my wandering away from it... (To answer Noreen's question about wondering if the Angels are saddened by what they see in the world today: The answer is no, because NOTHING mars the joy of Spirit. What happens in our world is the result of choices people make, good and bad! The bad things we learn from more than the good things, but Angels cannot interfere because of The Law Of Free Will. Those who do bad things are accruing Karma for themselves, which they will have to 'work off' perhaps, over many, many lifetimes, to return themselves to their pure state again. Angels, like our spirits, are ENERGY, composed of two elements: Light & Love. We personalise them for our minds to rationalise, as having wings and a body, so they appear to us like that in order not to frighten us and to allow our minds to accept what we see. It is the same with God. God is not a he or a she or an it. God is, again like our souls (spirits) pure energy and our soul is a chip of that energy within a human body, because there is no other way to traverse the human world, so we choose to be born. At the moment of death, our spirit is set free and I've known personally, many who have witnessed a spark of lite leaving their loved one's body at the precise moment of that loved one's death) . This is a VERY powerful poem, Daniel. The visual detail is beyond words, you are truly an artist with words, the Michaelangelo of poets! Wonderfully narrated, expressed in a very unique, yet, simple way. I truly enjoyed reading this poem. It has so much 'meat' on it, I was like a little dog gnawing away at the poetic bone as I made my way down the page. Kudos well deserved on this outstanding poetic Masterpiece. So thought provoking and unique! Thank you for sharing, Daniel. Blessings always... (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 2,381 Points Diane Hine (5/8/2014 6:49:00 AM)

    It works perfectly because they are not your own sentiments but those of the angel. In a situation such as the one described, only a callous angel would be unaffected. (Report) Reply

  • Freshman - 1,032 Points Noreen Carden (5/8/2014 5:12:00 AM)

    Hello Daniel the language of this poem is quite beautiful it gives pleasure to read it in the same way food satisfies hunger. I wonder if the angels look down on the world today and are they saddened by what they see I refer especially to the men who recently kidnapped two hundred girls and are boasting that they will sell them into forced marriages.Of course their real mission is to exclude them from education which is a basic right. Sorry Daniel I did not intend to rant just got side tracked. I love your poem. It is beautifully written and lovely to read (Report) Reply

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