Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Ash Wednesday

Curl the fingers to brush back bangs
Consider the vast, bald, blank canvass
The tiny head in the crook of daddy's arm
The elder, furrowed and somewhat dry
The youth, oily and acned
The head of shame, bowed but present
The face of pride, confident that others are more mortal
The heads not there
The heads not in the game
The eyes caught emotional and weeping
The eyes averting, too much soul to bear
The ashes, crumbled, crumbling
Caught under finger nails and creased into flesh
Flickering over noses
Or smeared in too much pressed olive oil

The small bowl
The ingredients back in the sacristy
Ashes of last year's palms

Moving along the altar rail, there I am
speaking again and again
To child and friend and lover and foe
Remember you are dust
To dust you shall return

The, simple stark beauty of imposing ash
is writing them on all those foreheads, 
from heads at death's door, 
to heads recently emerged from the womb. 

The range and texture of our mortality is a powerful, tangible thing.

1 comment:

  1. wow power words! day of fasting..pray for good ;)

    Kim of S.I. Unik