The Feast of Thorns

Long before our terrible story your birthday was already

the feast of Servites pruning winter roses. I cling to that now, all the other days this day could be:

Obstinate mountains lumber into obeisant seas

Lame men whole, blind men see

Dead men rise and shake off their shroudy bindings

impossible things all around ya

If only you will

See

Chuppah

You should not drink juice, especially from plastic straws, should not drink milk, especially whole, for animal protein is a moral issue now, too much to intervene, to save the children from anything but

Juice and whole

Milk, honey,

And mammon are such old words, reminders Jesus is older than

All of us. This rough hut, this hand-held chuppah, this soaring cathedral, this new grave, this glassy sea.

I may tell myself in my best moments that all this is the real real, true true we will inhabit together One Day, One Day

But today, yesterday, tomorrow even

We are the monsters

We become.

Words for thirsty

We sit in the shade, it is all shade here, so incorporeal, so many of us, all waiting for a voice, for a light, for The Before The After, the now and forever, we talk of sunsets, the way the sun might send one last piercing shaft of light up through the darkening sky, faith-hope-love coming for us, they say, these men who have seen the-greatest-of-these-is-love

But when? How long until

We are irrevocably

Called to life.

Jennifer the Beautiful

I miss you girl

Miss your sister

Your nieces, nephews, cousins, children

Used to sing

Break-up songs for lullabies

Wish I could write you and me

A happy kind of story instead

No lost loves, no broken promises

Hope changed into

The steady gaze of a man who can build with his own two hands

Homecoming tabernacle

For all us, broken

Fetal Position

Forebear all hymns, celebratory, solemn, or liturgical

Just wash the stuffed animal

Mammalian, maternal

Using sewn-on paws to clutch

a miniature version of herself

To her belly, too big for an ordinary machine, she curls without consent into

The grey plastic washtub

Fetal position

I think, anthropomorphizing

Everything

The Women in the Story

Matthew 1:3,5-6 NIV

[3] Judah the father of Perez and Zerah, whose mother was Tamar, Perez the father of Hezron, Hezron the father of Ram, [5] Salmon the father of Boaz, whose mother was Rahab, Boaz the father of Obed, whose mother was Ruth, Obed the father of Jesse, [6] and Jesse the father of King David. David was the father of Solomon, whose mother had been Uriah’s wife,

It can be tempting to ask why all their names are not there.

It can be tempting to ask why Uriah never got a son, or why Judah was such a freaking loser but still got to be on the list.

But they are there–the prostitutes, the good girls, the chronically misunderstood. Most of them anyway, because the God of Sarah, Leah, and Mary told the Israelites keep all the babies, they all matter to Me.