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Carl Leggo

About this Christian Poet:
Carl Leggo is a professor at the University of British Columbia where he teaches courses in writing. He is the author of four books: Growing Up Perpendicular on the Side of a Hill, View from My Mother's House, Teaching to Wonder: Responding to Poetry in the Secondary Classroom, and Come-By-Chance. He and his wife Lana fellowship at Emmanuel Christian Community in Richmond, British Columbia.

Empty Tomb

Jesus lived the earth's experience
of womb to tomb, but the womb
was not the beginning, and
the tomb was not the ending

the Gospel of John begins:
In the beginning was the Word,
and the Word was with God,
and the Word was God.
He was with God in the beginning.

the Christian story is a murder mystery:
the Word is murdered,
the world murders the Word,
the Creator is crucified
by the created, an act of heartless
ingratitude beyond imagination

the same wise Word that spoke
the world into creation is murdered
by the world's noisy sin-bent
heart-breaking imbecilic betrayal

while the Word knew the world
the world did not know the Word

and with the death of the Word
poetry died, too, and darkness
and despair filled songs with
such steady sad silence, joy and
hope were choked, suffocated

but no tomb could hold the Word for long,
the empty tomb is really a tome without end,
a story that defies definitions, all the words
in all the languages in all the dictionaries
ever invented to tell it true, like it is

and so on this Easter morning,
we call out in our many languages,
our many voices, our many words,
the tomb is empty, Jesus is risen,
the Word is both lively and lovely 

the Christian story is a rollicking romance:
the Word who loves us with sacred abandon
is the author of faith, salvation, life, our rock,
redemption, righteousness, our resurrection,
words with rock and roll rhythms that
call us to dance our loose-limbed joy

even the torturous cross blooms
with a wild earth heart bouquet,
chants a meadow of wildflowers

on this new Easter morning
let us dance in the meadow
as we remember the empty tomb
and know the meaning nobody knew
on the first Easter morning, long ago,
how the hole, the empty tomb,
is like the zero in mathematics and
spells the fullness of other relationships,
connections, and possibilities

everything makes sense finally
because of the hole, the tomb's
emptiness, the zero's nothingness,
which opens up all hopes and beginnings

so we can know the fullness of life,
now and forever, know the Word lives,
know the Word loves you and me, all of us

the Gospel of John ends:
Jesus did many other things as well.
If every one of them were written down,
I suppose that even the whole world
would not have room for the books
that would be written.

on this Easter morning,
let us belly laugh with the angels, sing
to the creation from the soles of our feet
as we dance with the Creator who loves us
beyond all our words with the perfect love
only the Word can write in poems for filling
us with the lyrical light of his morning star

Copyright©2007 by Carl Leggo