One Step Above All That

To the Gods
by W.S. Merwin, from Present Company

Present Company When did you stop
telling us what we could believe

when did you take that one step
only one
above
all that

as once you stepped
out of each of the stories
about you one after the other
and out of whatever we imagined we knew
of you

who were the light
to begin with
and all of the darkness
at the same time
and the voice in them
calling crying
and the enormous answer
neither coming nor going
but too fast to hear

you let us believe
the names for you
whenever we heard them
you let us believe the stories
how death came to be
how the light appeared

how the beginning began
you let us believe
all that

then you let us believe
that we had invented you
and that we no longer
believed in you
and that you were only stories
that we did not believe

you with no
moment for beginning
no place to end
one step above
all that

listen to us
wait
believe in us