Hope without Prayer,
a lonely, miserable thing.
Like a traveler without a map,
it wanders aimlessly.
But more than that, it suffers!
A deluded light it follows, like
breadcrumbs from the devil.
Stooped forward and hungry, it walks
with a bent spine and with round bulging eyes
it sees and yet is blind.
It spends its life searching in vain,
a hand stretched out like a beggar’s
for some fruit for its labor,
some answer for its pain.
But none is given except anger,
A deluge of bitterness;
an insidious acid rain.
For never did its hands curl upward
Never once took the Lord’s name,
No Prayer ever graced its ruined lips,
No humility, repentance, nor shame.
As death stretched open its hungry maw,
and revealed the glowing coals in its throat,
Realization, terror, understanding took hold, and
the shriveled body of misbegotten hope,
shook with regret, with shame
and curled its dying hands upward,
as the embers fanned to flame.