As Hard as Dragon Scales

The band on my heart
Is the shackle on my arm,
As I succumb to the mirth
Of earthly charms.
I harbor pain not to be mine
In hands meant to grasp the Divine.

On the pile of gold I stake my claim,
Unaware that I have taken Sin’s shape.
My wings cannot bear me from my shame,
And the chasm below me hungrily gapes.
Selfless and selfish are now reversed,
And both of my forms are utterly cursed.

I see all I am not meant to love,
As temptation distracts from Above.
Your Mercy bids me exit the cave
To remove from Your image the title, “Slave.”
You await my depravity by the pool,
In which I see the reflection of a fool.

To enter it would purge me to death,
But You promise to give me Your breath.
“Remove your scales,” is your command,
But they resist my claws…like the band.
Layer upon layer I desperately scrape,
Only to find, alone, I cannot escape.

Your hands start to tear, piercing my heart.
They rebuild me as they rip me apart.
Into the water, You cast Your own
To reclaim what you turned from dust to bone.
You draw me out upon the shore
To wear the band nevermore.

I can only stand by falling to my knees,
crying, “Do with me as you please!”
The call of the gold is silenced in my ears,
And my eyes washed clean by joyful tears.
With my shackles gone, I can now run free
Down life’s path with You as all of me.

 by Alyssa Carlburg