three times he asked me–why’d it
have to be three? three times i had
sworn i didn’t know him, three times
i had cursed his name, and then
run away into the darkness like a
child trying to hide from the monsters
in the night. three times, and then
the rooster crow.
so he had to ask, didn’t he,
three times: peter. do you love me?
and i had to ask: do i? do i even
dare to presume such a thing?
and he kept on asking, do you love me?
you know i do. why do you keep asking?
what are you trying to do?
and he said, feed my sheep and follow me.
he gave me the chance to take up
my cross, like i could not, would not
and so i have carried it,
all the way to this roman hill,
and i too will rise again.
if you had been writing this story
he would have looked like an angel
or a king or a god, would have blinded
the eyes of his enemies, would have
come in pomp and splendor,
not walked up to me and asked,
“ma’am, who are you looking for?”
like he didn’t know, like he couldn’t
read my tears like he knew my name.
i thought he was the groundskeeper,
the gravedigger, and i almost ignored him.
and then he spoke, and then i saw him,
the glorified gardener, the king of eden,
who had crushed the serpent’s head.
i ran back to the others, sowing
gospel seeds in my wake. he called my
name. he calls it still. and every time
i still can see his face.
three days ago
they broke His body on the hill
for the sake of expedience
and now we run back from
the village having watched
that body break the bread
of presence, the sacrifice
made priest, the prophesied
made prophet, the king of the
Jews made the Lord of lords
we fly back to Jerusalem
with hearts aflame
three days ago we too were
slain. and now today
we also rise again.