Old Nick’s Joke … and more

Old Nick’s Joke

To the world, Satan is a joke—

A creature of mythology,

Rising from liturgical smoke,

Credible as astrology.


Satan—and Zeus and Jupiter,

Earth Mother and hammer-held Thor—

A projection of fangs and fur.

(The “beast” schoolboys’ killed with gore.)


The Rover views landscapes of Mars.

A man beheads for all to see.

No answer comes from silent stars.

Old Nick loves anonymity.



Satan himself masquerades

As an angel of light, *


Flaunting a golden charade,

To lure what’s shady, as bright.


It takes a discerning eye

To spot luminous sin—


He’s crafty, cunning and sly,

To gloss our darkness within,


And spell what is dark as light.

* 2 Cor. 11:14


The Mask

Sin wears a cherubic mask

And beams forth paradise.

“Come in, recline, and bask.”

The discerning eye looks twice:

The gate shuts into a vice

The writer has written sacred and secular verse for decades. He has been published in Prairie Messenger, Windhover, The Anglican Theological Review, Ancient Paths, The Christian Communicator, Time of Singing, The Christian Century, and others. He is a member of the Winston Salem Writers. He serves a life sentence, condemned to write verse. His Jesus Through A Poet’s Lens is now available via Kindle. https://www.amazon.com/s?k=Peter+Carrington+Venable&ref=nb_sb_noss