Paradise Resumed

Kneeling with natural passion, face uplifted
Dawn repeats her prayers' fated refrain.
Redeem your sons to mingle my seed with Eve's!

Their hunger whetted and consummated, naked
she serves their repast, still libidinously
enamoured with Adam's masculine sight,
his divine resemblance and large front.

Lingering in embrace with cups of wine,
Dawn close at his ear whispers softly
fateful words to stir the animal spirits
of his male engendered pride.

is Cain your son? If so, why is he
so dark when Eve and you are so light?
Even our twin daughters, Morgen and Sorgen,
are fair and blonde. Perhaps my father,

with passion the Tree of Knowledge induced
conceived Cain in carnal knowledge with Eve.

Eve's secret exposed, Dawn reclines
on mossy cushions like Giorgione's
Venus at sunset and as the dusk rises
the supper's fire's embers pattern

lovely female body with flickering chiaroscuro
light and dark, mocking Adam's tortured soul.

Can you see the stars as this world darkens?
Do you discern the celestial constellations emerging?
Have you heard the stories their figures tell?
Do you feel the planets and moon constrain your horoscope?

Adam, the joint of lamb you enjoyed at supper
came from your son Abel. Such a man!
Giant Son of God. Sorgen loves him so.
As do their daughters, and the daughters
of the Others fleeing the Cherubim's flaming
sword out of Eden's east gate. Your

son is so different from Cain, always
weighing the consequences of his actions;
unlike Abel, always following his

You have changed, Adam, your character
more like Cain. When Eve tempted,
why did you succumb? You and I
could have stayed in Paradise,

for all eternity. Was it ever better
than conceiving our daughters? We had
it made. On and on Dawn berates Adam.

Bile darkening his soul, Adam relates
the vision the angel Michael revealed,
in Eden, its details disputed in later years
by John Milton.

And Adam unburdens this prediction —
one of his sons will murder the other —
sibling rivalry in mankind's first family.

Who will kill whom? asks Dawn.
It wasn't clear, replies Adam.
The smoke from the altars burnt
offerings obscured my sight. One
altar was Cain's; the other altar Abel's.

Can we influence this outcome? If God's
Providence out of our evil seek to bring forth good,
our labour must be to pervert that end,
and out of good still to find means of evil
the Serpent's daughter said.

Some of the Others worship gods of the sky,
deities of the moon, sun and planets demanding
their eldest child sacrificed on their heathen altars.
Was this the vision Michael revealed to you?

Not unlike Eve who tempted Adam
with Eden's forbidden fruit, Dawn whispers
her scheme. And why?

                                  Cain, her brother,
rejected Dawn's frequent incestuous advances
while she lay in wait at his field hut's door.

Like all couples, Cain and Morgen
had differences. Conceived under
the Tree of Knowledge with both sinful
X and Y chromosomes, Cain possesses
an acute knowledge of good and evil
and has avoided irreconcilable differences
with his beloved wife.

                                Conceived before
Adam sinned, Morgen has a pure X
chromosome from him, and a sinful X
chromosome from Dawn, conflicting
her desires. After a fight, Cain seeks refuge
in his hut while tilling his fields and growing
fruit and vegetables.

                              Loving all creatures, God
gives some words of fatherly advice to Cain.
If thou doest well shalt thou not be accepted?
And if thou doest not well, Sin (Dawn) lieth
at thy door. And unto thee shall be his (Satan
is the father of Sin) desire.

At their weekly family meeting,
Adam informs his sons that God
wants an offering of their products,
a burnt offering — like the heathens'.

Eve, who has turned Vegan, smiles warmly
at Cain; while Adam, a meat eater, looks
favourably on Abel with his vast herds
of sheep and cattle.

                              Conceived before
Adam and Eve sinned, Abel is a natural.
like Edmund of Shakespeare's King Lear,
operating on instinct, knowing good
without understanding evil.

                                    Abel is like an orphan,
because Adam and Eve became qualitatively
different people after the Fall. He is a giant,
whose stature the Fall did not diminish.

Women love him, because like Adam
before the Fall, he will have sex with
any woman who desires him. His many
offspring, the giant human sons of God,
grieved God so much before the Flood.

Many generations later, it will be said
the patriarch Abraham is much like Abel.
And like righteous Abraham, righteous
Abel is willing to undertake the task
when Adam informs him that God
wants his eldest son as an offering.

And on the appointed day of rest
Cain brought of the fruit of the ground
his offering. And Abel brought
an offering of his flocks of sheep.

And fires were built on the altars of stone,
and Cain roasted potatoes and corn,
and Abel braised lamb chops and steak.

The smoke from Abel's altar rose high
into the heavens, while Cain's altar
smouldered, smoke lingering on the ground.

And God noted Abel's smoke curling
to the heavens, but took no note
of Cain's lingering smoke. And Eve ate of Cain's
offering, while Adam availed himself of Abel's.

Dismayed at this show of favouritism
by his parents, Cain's countenance fell.
With his acute knowledge of good and evil,
Cain knows Abel is about to make another
of his unwitting mistakes.

                                        God notices
Cain's anger and disappointment as Abel's
older brother, and admonishes him again.

If thou doest well shalt thou not be accepted?
And if thou doest not well, Sin lieth at thy door.
And unto thee shall be his desire,
and thou shalt rule over him (Satan).

And in the process of time it came to pass,
that Abel visited Cain working his fields
intending to cut his throat with his sheep
slaughtering knife after knocking him
unconscious with a club. Cain, hoeing
his potatoes with his mattock, thinks
Abel has stopped by for a friendly visit.

After a few words pass between them,
Cain perceives Abel's intentions, dodging
Abel's club that strikes a glancing blow
to Cain's head knocking him to the ground.

As Abel advances on Cain with his knife,
Cain rises up and hits Abel in the temple
with his mattock, killing him instantly.

Cain digs a hole among his rows
of potatoes and buries Abel.

Many generations later when Noah
loads the Ark with animals and plants
to survive the Flood, God orders Noah
to leave out the potatoes.

only survived in the Andes Mountain,
and were only available for European
consumption after the Spanish conquistadors
arrived with their priests.

Cain deceives Adam and Eve with a tale:
Abel has run off with one of his concubines
to minister to some idol worshipers.

God is not gullible. Where is thy brother
God asks. Cain says, I know not: Am
I my brother's keeper?

                                  Cain, of course,
knows that God knows Abel is dead.
But with the theology available
in mankind's early days, Cain
doesn't know if Abel is in hell
or in heaven. His superb knowledge
of good and evil isn't much help
solving paradoxes.

                            If Abel is in heaven,
then God acquiesced to Abel sacrificing
Cain. Abel, with his pure genes, is righteous.
So how can he be in hell?

                                      To be his brother's
keeper, Cain must take over from Satan
in hell with Abel already there.

                                              Cain decides
to leave it up to God to get good
out of this evil conundrum.

that Cain is genuinely sorry for killing
Abel, God banishes Cain to the land of Nod.
Because Cain's potatoes are tainted
with Abel's blood, Cain agrees to focus
his agrarian activities on crops like grain
and corn, crops more difficult to grow.

Cain leaves the sight of God, to raise
children with Morgen and Sorgen,
the inseparable twin daughters
of Adam and Dawn.

And God leaves
the mark on Cain's head from Abel's
club so that the Others will not kill him.

Five generations later, Lamech
also takes two wives, Adah and Zillah.
He retains Cain's acute knowledge
of good and evil, passed down
from Satan's Y chromosome.

When Lamech in self-defence kills a man,
he knows God will protect him from retaliation.

New Testament exegetes dwell
on this paradox of Cain and Abel.

They agree that Cain was the literal
son of Satan. Abel, not affected
genetically by the Fall, was literally

                To kill in self-defence
is evil. To let oneself be killed
is also evil.

God's battle with Satan
is not yet resolved. Mankind
must leave it up to God and Jesus
to get good out of this evil conundrum.

© Elmer Wiens






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