(For Palm Sunday)

Trample our foes
Under metal-shod heel
Under ramrod doctrine
And volumes of steel.
You are, in our red-rimmed and battle-blind sight,
A war horse for nothing but wild-eyed fight.

Wield your savior,
Oh tyrants and slaves,
Sharpen him,
Ready your god for the war.
Forget all about how He came on a colt.
It’s foolish to think He would come for the poor.

Palms ready now,
To deliver the blow
To the face of an enemy
You hardly know.
Arm your children with verses
Hosannas arise!
Raise them up in the knowledge of
Shrill battle cries.

Brandish the Infant,
The Shepherd, the Lamb.
His Gospel is Peace
And Mercy toward man.
When He bleeds in a week
And your paradigms die,
Just focus on future pain
Etched in the sky.

When true judgment comes and you’ve spent lives in war,
And the blood of the nations drips thick from your sword,
Perhaps you’ll be shocked at His judgments that day.

Perhaps you forgot Whom He came down to slay.

“For everything there is a season, and a time for every matter under heaven: a time for war, and a time for peace…”
Ecclesiastes 3:1, 8b

(Liturgical poetry during Lent is inspired by the Ecclesiastes 3:1-8. Photo by Linnea Wheeler; illustration by Pauline Baynes.)

Words for the Church: Holy Week
all will be new
we gather together
black and blue
new wine

Words for the Church: Lent
the death of fire
tiny tilting towers
via del vagare
enrich the earth

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