Poetics of Prayer

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Holy, Harrowing Saturday

Does he bear not only his future pain but the wounds, words, deeds, and things of all, for all time: the splitting of the atom, the finding of fire, the exploding of the bomb, the child pinned under the Pinto, the dog sunk in a black pond, the smoke rising over the vain city, the first split cell, mutation of fish, arrow into beast, tufts of gun smoke, sunspots on a high window, gallons of cold coffee? Does he bear it all, Christ, churning within him, every war that ever was or ever will be, dancing in his molecules so that it is just challenging to be around this man? Does Christ carry the you of two thousand years away, you and all your pretty madness, the girl you left behind, the bad movies, the failed exams, the love child, the weird quiet relief of cutting the lawn, the crushed cathedral, the mushroom and the cloud and the way a snake turns everything around it into sacred fear? Does he bear that, him down on the end of your bench? […] The disease, love, joy, tender flesh in a battlefield; a carjacking, a first kiss, a last breath. Does he carry these things, he who became sin?

—Joe Hoover, SJ O Death, Where is Thy Sting? A Meditation on Suffering

“The women who had come with him from Galilee followed and saw the tomb and how his body was laid. Then they returned and prepared spices and ointments. On the that Saturday they rested according to the commandment.”

St. Luke 23:55—56