I’m afraid I couldn’t find a suitable image/video/song to go with this one, so I’ll just proceed to the poem.
Then everybody tramped to the churchyard. The effigy was dragged to an open place, a black baseball hat on its head, and a half dozen drunken men fell upon it, shouting, kicking, ripping at the limbs.
~ Cynthia Gorney, “A People Apart” (National Geographic, November 2008)
Stomping to the burial ground, they
Wrapped their spider-hands around his head –
The mad shrieks created an unbreakable silence,
Overthrowing God on His throne –
They tied him to a stone effigy,
A decapitated angel with eagle wings,
And then and there they torched him.
They even took their clothes off,
Wrapped them in a bundle and lighted them,
So that they might burn every bit of flesh,
Every bone, every nook and cranny
That might have been hiding his Soul.
His Soul was a pitiful thing –
They found it, scared and shivering,
Behind an upset tomb. It was so thin,
Almost invisible, they almost missed it.
But then – they seized it and took it
To their prison, where they judged it
And found it guilty. The next Saturday,
At dawn, they burned it at the stake.