What does God require in the sixth, seventh and eighth commandments?
Sixth, that we do not hurt, or hate, or be hostile to our neighbour, but be patient and peaceful, pursuing even our enemies with love. Seventh, that we abstain from sexual immorality and live purely and faithfully, whether in marriage or in single life, avoiding all impure actions, looks, words, thoughts, or desires, and whatever might lead to them. Eighth, that we do not take without permission that which belongs to someone else, nor withhold any good from someone we might benefit.
So, when order is perfect –
when what’s mine is not mine but
a loan, a trust,
when all’s laid out by hands that know,
each portion wisely portioned, each
gift a chance to give –
then we will not look, haughty,
across our neighbour’s fence, nor
what has not been placed in our hands.
Outstretched arms must come with open palms,
open eyes to see
not boundary, not deprivation,
but the plenty which grows in
fields, in furrows
which, ordered, know the times, the ways,
upturned mouths expectant of
each daily gift of grace.