Apr 3, 2009

Poof and proof and texts

The little lawyer had a leather book, with all the verses in it. He had them written neatly in two columns, the right side for the prosecution and the left for defense. He had them down in neat notation, the references for quotations of the bible, columns of quotations for religious-looking juries and for the general sense of generic belief in the bible, verses for all purposes for all arguments requiring invocations and an appearance of the authority of God.

He had verses for blood and for forgiveness, for justice and judging-not. He had verses for condemnation, with sonorous sayings for an assured and unimpeachable sense of righteousness. And he had verses for grace, for taking the plank out of your own eye, for pity and piously choosing to step aside and leave well-enough alone.

In the one column, blood called out for blood, and eyes called for eyes. In the other, the blind cried for mercy and end to cyclical senselessness, and the saviour taught forgiveness without end.

There were other pages with other tactics and grab-bag stratagem, in the little lawyer's leather book, but this one was about ways to make the bible be on the side of a specific case, whatever the case might be. It was titled God's Word. It was underlined twice. He flipped it open for opening arguments and closing arguments, finding the appropriate column and finding fitting words to fit the crime. He flipped it open, every time, and always stood and always started saying, the great prophet, the bible prophet Isaiah, he said something important I always like to remember at moments like this. The wise prophet, this good man of the holy bible, he said, Come down now, and let us reason together.

It didn't really mean anything, the little lawyer knew, but he said it like a magician says poof before the proof is revealed, and it always sounded good.