Fear Not!

Akwaeke Emezi

Jam, our protagonist, upon viewing pictures of angels in an old book:

They were supposed to be angels, but they were terrifying; eyes filled with licking flames even as they look out form the page, armoured faces that weren’t faces, wings full of mouths, wheels of reddened eyes, four-headed forms that weren’t even vaguely human. […]

This recalls for me this passage in Silence, Simplicity, and Solitude where David A. Cooper quotes Louis Ginzberg (The Legends of the Jews Vol. 3):

The story of Moses on the mountain, as told in the Bible, is only half-complete. The collection of Jewish folklore, called the Midrash, gives us the other side. There we read that Moses not only saw “all of the seven heavens, and the celestial temple,” hearing the angles praising God […] But also, “when he started to descend and behold the hosts of the angles of terror, angels of trembling, angels of quaking, and angels of horror […]”

Jam’s mother, Bitter, points out to her daughter (and thus reminds the reader) that good is not innocent.

And so for day 2843

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