Life this week has me longing for resurrection. Brutality, disease, folly, and well, sin, has got me longing for that for which I have only had glimpses.
In February, artist Keaton Sapp and I began a project which would take us through Lent and to Easter. As we planned in November of 2019, how could we have imagined how February would turn and March and April play out? Much of life has gotten away from me. Learning about new things and new ways to do old things have also played into the cumulative weariness of this season. I hadn’t even finished my part of the project. I had one more poem to write before the online reception we are planning for next weekend. And then came this week.
It is Jesus’ mother, Mary, and Mary Magdalene whose experiences in John’s gospel speak to me of the utter heart break of life without a resurrection. These last weeks, have reminded me of the heart break.
Repeatedly throughout the Scriptures, the cry is, “How long, Lord?” That we are still crying, “How long?” does not mean that the waiting is unending. For some, and my hope is with their hope, they have seen with their own eyes the beginning of the new day. And though we still wait, they wait with us, and tell us, “One day….”
You may listen to me read the poem via the player below.
When will the killing stop? When will the crying
Be given over to joy, tears wiped away?
When will laughter replace our sighing—
The night’s fear cleared by the rise of new day?
When will mothers no longer give their sons
To wars which always take more than their share?
When be armed with grace, not hate, not guns,
Nor left to die by those who don’t care?
Funerals are the last things mothers do
For those whom they’ve carried, delivered, lost—
For those whom they’ve raised and prayed over too;
Their tears are the price paid by love’s cost.
One day with them Surprise shall call in Grace
And Resurrection wipe the tears from our face.
© Randall Edwards 2020.
This poem is for Christ’s church. If it is helpful, please feel free to copy or reprint in church bulletins, read aloud, or repost. I only ask that an attribution be cited to myself (Randall Edwards) and this blog (backwardmutters.com). Thank you.
Artwork: © Keaton Sapp 2020, “The Kiss.” Pen and ink. All Rights Reserved.