Poem: Good Friday 1990, (Revised)

So tell me, man, with your arms outstretched
and weeping wounds,
Is this what you embraced
when you took all sin upon you?
I believe, bleeding friend,
I believe in the Dead Sea Scrolls.
These scrolls revealed you as a man,
The humble carpenter, the popular preacher,
You are no closer to The Glory than I.
But your message has been changed,
Words and sentences anagrammed into the gospel half-truth.
People thrusting glory onto you,
And you are unafraid to receive it, so they say.
Ah, but you had answers!!
What the meek would get,
what the holy deserve,
but were they really your words?
Or did they come from some other source?
Did you really reach for peace by tipping the merchant stalls?
In my time
East Germany apologises for World War II
Can I find forgiveness in my heart like you did?
Can I claim to have space for the sins of soldiers?
As you had space for the sins of humanity?
We are
Threatened from all sides,
There is no easy scapegoat now.
Would you take them in with your outstretched arms
Your weeping wounds and bleeding heart? 
Take us all in,
you were the first assimilator.
So tell me,
man with your arms outstretched 
and weeping wounds, 
Is this what you embraced
 when you took all sin upon you? 
We are all cynics, so honesty need not apply 
And sarcasm always goes down well. 
Make the pessimists happy 
and that’s half the problem solved; 
just don’t make the optimists sad.   
Simon Lenthen   2/6/90 


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