Lies of Hope

We beg for the mercy of lies
So we don’t have to face the mercilessness of truth.
But one day we wake up and swear to tell the truth,
And then have no idea what it is.

There are hand-caught-in-the-cookie-jar lies
Which never work.
And there are cowardly lies,
Sins we inevitably pay for long before we get to the Pearly Gates.

There are lies of arrogance.
When we assume we know the truth and hide it.
Indeed we thought that’s what it meant to lie.
But in reality we had no idea what the truth was and only kidded ourselves we did.

There are also lies of hope.
Where we aren’t so much lying
As improvising,
Trying to hit a moving target we cannot always see.

At their best our lies are hopes,
Try outs
For an improvisational play
We cannot script.

I regret the lies I told.
But often I knew no truths any better.
Some of the lies I told came true and made the world better.
And some were just lies that made the world all the worse.

Now I face the Final Judgment.
The choir of angels tells me there were truths I should have known.
And I would dearly love to have known what they were.
So I improvise and tell the angels my best lies were guesses in the dark,
Mapping the maze bump by bump.

As for my worst lies,
I throw myself on the mercy of the court
And hope they lie to me
And tell me it’s all all right.