Wednesday, March 27, 2013
A POEM FOR MAUNDY THURSDAY
I gaze across the ages to
a garden of the past,
their spectral spell now cast,
and through the window of my soul
into the darkness stare,
until the starry sky reveals
the ghostly figures there.
As fantasy takes form and shape
the scene becomes more clear.
It is the Master's face I see,
and those of others near.
I watch him kneeling, deep in prayer,
close by three sleeping friends.
How could they all forsake the one
on whom their life depends?
His sweat appears like drops of blood---
the Passion has begun!
"Remove this bitter cup," he prays;
"but let thy will be done."
I hear one call him "Master," then
betray him with a kiss.
Did ever friend betray a friend
in such a way as this?
Another who has called him "Lord,"
and boldly said "I can!"
Will soon deny him with a curse:
"I do not know the man!"
I look with shame upon the twelve;
they fail to meet the test.
I know that I for one would not
forsake him like the rest.
No traitor nor betrayer I,
nor one who'd flee his call.
Could I but speak, could they but hear,
I'd castigate them all!
Within the olive shadows yet
one face remains obscure.
I strain to catch a closer look.
It must be John, for sure.
But he whom Jesus loves the most
is running fast away!
Not even John (if it be John)
is brave enough to stay.
To verify my guess I hold
my dream-made lantern high,
and phantom flame on feeling form
reveals that it is I!