Jesus describes a nearby city – The Branch

I do not mind walking last.
The mule no longer nips the fine grass clung to my clothes.
We have arrived. At etched pillars impersonating a gate.
This city is called Sepphoris. It has no walls.

Arms opened to tyrants and conquerors alike.
This city’s protection, insurance of vitality and life
for local people, is her market.

Any foreign merchant come to take, destroy,
fly one flag while burning all others,
will slowly grow hunger,
drying up shallow waters so thirst can grow deep.
And in the loneliest hours, sex is served up,
never far from costly black tar
that burns throats and purses bare.

Ultimately, the lowest, the roaches and rats, win out.
Not as in least, but stooped lowest in a realm
of flying swords and falling axes, heads
kicked to the ground under a crown’s
tremendous foot are seldom severed.

The people who survive it are using their tongues
to clean the heel, tickle grit out from between toes,
swallowing shit like dogs hungry to impress.

These are the people of Sepphoris.
They will outlive the rest of us.

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