Sandra Savage is a poet from Calgary, Alberta. She is a member of Alexandra Writers Guild and her work has been published in Freefall Magazine and Great Lakes Gazette.
Crucified, Risen, Still Wounded
Then shall the Priest say
Thursday, you will arrive late and with excuses. I know this today. Knew it
when you set our plan. As I know, one drink after work with the guys will be out all night.
Ye that do truly
Eucharistic call to forgive those who have harmed before and now
we bewail our manifold sins and wickedness, beseech absolution
through the hand of a priest
You will not call. You will not apologize on your knees as you require of me.
You do not tolerate any intrusion on your freedom, your dominance.
repent you of your sins
After confession, God has put away our sins
as if they never were. How does perfection
forgive those who wound Him, pardon and deliver
and are in love
I’ll forgive your contempt but hold the hurts fresh and close to resurrect
next time. Savour them like chocolates melting on my tongue until they fill my mouth
mere woman who offends the Divine?
Christ on the Cross, crucified
as a common criminal, forgives
with your neighbours
until that is all that I am, overwhelming sweetness that sickens.
I pull off the scabs from the wounds you’ll create Thursday. I will not allow them
and intend to lead the new life
forgives those who know not
what they do. Forgives Peter,
who claims three times to know Him not.
following the commandments
to heal. I’ve picked each cut you’ve inflicted until I have permanent scars.
If there is no pain, if I no longer live the intensity of this hurt, what then is there to forgive?
Forgives Thomas, who doubts until
he has placed his fingers into the wounds.
And I feel superior to Thomas: without seeing,
and walking from henceforth
Can I forgive that which I can not forget? Can I forget that which I will not forgive?
I know, each moment that I hold the pride of my pain, the righteousness of my injury, I sin.
in his holy ways
without touching, I believe.
And I should. By thought, word, and deed
I live within those wounds
Draw near with faith
How to let go, to forgive and to forget? “Through the grace of God,” my priest tells me,
“Let the Holy Spirit enter into you..” I take my faith, what has survived the pain
and take this holy Sacrament
keep them open, The burden
of them is intolerable, knowing
I, too, who knows not
to your comfort
pull it around me, into me, pray, meditate, Maranatha: Come Lord, Come Lord Jesus.
I see my priest raise his hand to grant me absolution, my move toward Jesus enough
and make your humble confession
will be forgiven when I ask
Have mercy upon us. Each time I ask
the hand will rise
to Almighty God
God closes the rest of the distance, forgives me. And then I understand: you are not
the cause. Your disdain, I have embraced. Inflicted my own wounds. I forgive
the priest will speak
and I will hear
on you knees.
this, this allowing myself to believe you had the power. Now, it will be only me.
And God. His words. Inside my head.
YOU ARE MINE.
* All prayer passages taken from the 1662 Book of Common Prayer, England.
Copyright ©2009 by Sandra Savage