Lent 4: Tell me it's coming soon

"Prodigal Daughter" by Charles Mackesy

"Prodigal Daughter" by Charles Mackesy

"Inclement Sonnet" by Susanna Childress

Tell me snow is falling on the willows now, fat, full, unhurried,

for our bald neighbor-boy sleeps, his dark body beneath

a blanket knit brilliantly blue, his body wilted with

neuroblastoma.  Here on the couch, Emmy holds his head


while I wonder at what's sent from above, what we'd believe

drifts down during these months of ice, so far north we need

Easter to end winter for us--not Eostre, Teutonic myth,

vernal equinox; not eggs, red-iris bunnies beribboned

sweets.  Tell me what comes next: tires spinning, marrow

aspirating, gladiolus whispering when, when, Wednesday

ashing our brows and, for each, some coruscating stretch, most


Fridays not so good after all.  Last week he told his mum, I get a new

body if I go to heaven.  Tell me it's coming soon, Pascha* Sunday,

that, as they lift, our arms will ache, will awaken, with all we've lost.  

"Mother with Dead Child" by Kathe Kollwitz

"Mother with Dead Child" by Kathe Kollwitz

You free us
from the dread of death,
and make this life a door.  
You grant our very flesh
a fallow season,
then gather all
at the last horn's blast.
You sow the earth
with these our bodies,
shaped by Your own hand.  
You bring
the harvest in,
transforming death into
abundant life,
all defect into beauty.

--Macrina the Younger (adapted by Scott Cairns)