The Fair Sisters Of Law - Poem by Yen Cress
Some say the Lady Justice binds her eyes
To fairly judge, impartiality
The trait that makes her truly fair and wise.
Oblivious of nationality,
Financial status, creed, or social class-
Whatever makes a woman, man, or child
Distinct from any other in the mass-
The Lady is not easily beguiled.
The law, the facts, the testimony true,
The witnesses' descriptions, line by line,
And learned counselors, who try to woo
That Lady with demeanor palatine,
Are all she knows: These with her scales she weighs.
Accused, the prison's prey is brought to court
To wait for Justice, with her shrouded gaze,
To lift her scales and measure truth's report.
If Lady Justice finds one faultless still
Of doing wrong, of breaching legal walls,
The sound of freedom's chimes will send a thrill
Through watchers gathered in the hallowed halls.
A guilty verdict tolls a deathly knell
Or spells a sentence of imprisonment:
No sweetly ringing sound like freedom's bell,
But peals both fearful and magnificent.
The Lady Justice will not abdicate
Her queenly throne, resolving to fulfill
The duty of determining the fate
Of those who come before her worthy will,
But liking not to stand alone, prefers
The Lady Mercy to participate
And share the jurisdiction that is hers:
More wisely, thus, the two cooperate.
For though the eyes of Justice wear a wrap
To block her view of inequalities,
Her sister suffers no such handicap:
She sees and disregards frivolities.
She sees the disadvantaged, wretched soul,
Demoralized and tortured by desire
To leave the torment of his hellish hole,
Who sinks, instead, more deeply in the mire.
A foolish youth stands humble and afraid
Before the bar of statutory blame.
His adolescent peccadilloes fade
When Mercy grants new honor to his name.
A guilty harlot in her gaudy dress
Deserves what Lady Justice might decree.
But Mercy sees a victim of duress,
Says, 'Go, and sin no more, ' then sets her free.
In perfect beauty, side by side they stand:
The Lady Justice with her covered eyes
And golden balance in her slender hand,
Propriety embodied, fair and wise;
And lovely Lady Mercy, seeing all
Through clear, unfettered eyes of lenity,
Compassionate and gentle, standing tall,
With kindly smiles of sweet serenity.
With mutual respect, they are prepared.
Each balancing the other's prudent choice,
The sisters speak, the verdict is declared,
Like harmonizing music, with one voice.
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