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Archive for February, 2007

Prayer for strength

In the Garden

“My soul is exceedingly sorrowful; Stay here and watch with me”

So, I stay.
The apostles must have tried –601388_robin_psycho.jpg
I know they did
For they cared about the one who prayed
With tears streaming.
I don’t really think he prayed
Out off fear of what was to come
For he knew, that he was God’s.
As we all are God’s
Yet he asked them to stay, and watch

(machine’s hum and one by one
Pilate’s soldiers in funny blue outfits
take a family to a quiet room
and agony or ecstasy happens
in that closed little space.)

My soul is exceedingly sorrowful; Stay here and watch:

So I stay and I watch
Conversations start – and end – fade away
Hallways are paced –
Their shiny floors echo
With the pacing of anxious feet
From decades passed
And reflect
The pacing yet to be

(a room of faces which would love to
relax into boredom
but can’t quite mask
the fear of “what-if” or
what-then”
they sit in plastic-feeling chairs
and flip through old magazines
pretending to find them fascinating)

My soul is exceedingly sorrowful; Stay

So I stay.
I’ve learned this;
The value of staying.
It’s not much – and still
More than the apostles did
They slept.
I hold a book in my lap
(perhaps my form of sleeping)
Remember to look up to see
Eyes that don’t want to be
Filled with fear
Hands that don’t want to be empty
Hearts that long for this all to be done
The man next to me –
His wife is all he has
And he has sat in this cold place so many times
Can’t ask, wants to ask,
Wondering what to ask,
Doesn’t know who to ask

(oh God, don’t ask me)

My soul is exceedingly sorrowful:

He was used, and used up.
Jesus, I mean.
And yet, also this man next to me.
Used and used up and not even
Considering that someone would stay
So I stay.
Grateful that he doesn’t know,
That he can’t know that I’m
Praying – oh yes, praying
That all that will be asked of me is to stay

My soul is exceedingly

Exceedingly full.
Of him. Of her.
Of waiting with him and knowing
That I don’t know what I will do
If the waiting is not enough
If the word is not good
If the doctor comes
And the four walls of that little room
That scream with others’ pain
Scream with his

My soul …

In the end
It comes down to this
My soul, and his
Like it was their soul
And His
All of us waiting – and sleeping

(to be unaware, or unable, or unwilling
is to be sleeping)

“The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak …”

He was ready,
I am not.
I will wait – I can wait
But Holy One, please, ask no more of me now
Except this waiting, and watching
I’ll stay and hear his heart,
Hear his story
But, oh please,
I’m not ready to
Hear his screams
And if the soldiers come
With lanterns and weapons
Then it will take everything
You have given me
Not to run into the night

“Get up. My Betrayer comes.”

copyright jtestin 2007

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