Jesus beat the bullies
back from the temple and wiped
his brow. He hadn’t signed
on for this. He counted the days
until retirement, which amounted
to seventy times seven. There was a backlog
of bribes and bitter confessions,
and the overtime was killing him.
He threw the first stone.
It skipped across
the Jordan, flung itself
back in a slingshot, and hit him
on the forehead as he wrote
in the sand a poem about forgiveness
with his own blood,
and frankly, this was his plan
all along. He did not want
to be a giant, he wanted to be an artist.
If they sent him downrange,
he would go AWOL.
He had never approved
of violence. He would stage
a sit-in at the left hand of God,
whose fingers made a permanent peace
sign. To the woman who touched
his garment, he said sister
you have always been whole — take up your protest signs, and march.
Chant, and the door will be opened