It was on the Sabbath Day

Haiku for those who would see.

Jesus was working;
it was on the Sabbath Day
that he healed the man.

The Pharisees freaked,
the thing was most improper;
called an inquiry.

What have you to say?
He can’t heal and break the law;
must be a sinner.

A sinner, you say?
He opened my eyes. I choose
to call him Prophet.

Yes, this is our son.
Yes, he was born without sight,
and yes, now he sees.

How did it happen?
Why are you questioning us?
Ask him, he will know!

They inquire once more:
His power must be from God,
says the seeing man.

The crowd was aroused,
the leaders were embarrassed.
So they threw him out.

Jesus found the man.
Now that you can see, he says,
keep your eyes open.

Some with eyes to see
choose the darkness over light;
they make themselves blind.

 

© Ken Rookes 2017

At Jacob’s Well

Haiku for an opening dialogue

Did Jesus say Please,
w
hen he asked her for a drink?
Let’s assume he did.

Having slaked his thirst,
he smiled, offered the woman
water that’s lasting.

She could play his game,
this Samaritan woman:
You need a bucket!

Not for this water;
You will never thirst again!
Yes, that would be cool.

Go get your husband.
Haven’t got one, she replied.
Mostly true, he said.

They talk religion,
where best to worship God.
Your church, or mine?

He’s coming, she said,
the Messiah, called the Christ.
You’re talking to him.

Epilogue.

Much excitement!
A prophet, perhaps the Christ;
come see for yourselves!

 

© Ken Rookes 2017

Hiding in the night

Haiku for the timid but curious.

Hiding in the night,
Nicodemus comes, seeking
answers from Jesus.

We have been impressed
by the things you’ve said and done;
God must be with you.

Truly I tell you,
if you would see the kingdom
you must be born anew.

Many years have passed
since I emerged from the womb;
can I repeat this?

Flesh gives birth to flesh.
You are spirit; from Spirit
your true life will come.

The Spirit-wind blows,
moving swift with mystery.
Be born of Spirit

You speak of wonders,
teacher. I don’t understand;
how can these things be?

Listen to my words
and receive them, they are life.
Lift your eyes, and see.

 

© Ken Rookes

Out into the wilderness.

Haiku for considering

The Spirit led him
out into the wilderness.
Time to think and pray.

Fasting forty days,
the pangs gnaw at the belly,
the mind becomes sharp.

The tempter comes by
to clarify the issues
and offer advice.

If you are the one,
the Son that God is sending,
make bread from these stones.

I could use some food.
There’s so much more to living;
I’ll take the hunger.

Look at the city!
Throw yourself from its towers;
angels will catch you!

It’s there in the book,
if you make demands on God
you’re missing the point.

Power and riches!
Trust me, you can have it all;
simply worship me.

Enough! says Jesus.
Life is real, becomes worthwhile,
when you’re serving God

The tempter decamps,
leaving Jesus by himself
to weigh his options.

 

© Ken Rookes 2017.

Other poems reflecting on the temptations of Jesus can be found here, and here. and here.

His face shone like the sun

Haiku of fear and bewilderment

A small, select group
go hiking up a mountain
to admire the view.

A vision of light.
His face, it burns like the sun,
his clothes dazzle white.

Jesus shines, commands
his friends’ attention; as if
words were not enough.

Jesus greets Moses
and Elijah, consulting
with history

The cloud of bright light
descends and immerses them
into mystery.

The cloud finds its voice:
This is my beloved son;
what he says is true.

The disciples quake,
with bewilderment and fear.
They fall to the ground.

They are left alone.
Jesus comes to them and speaks:
Do not be afraid.

Making their descent,
he instructs them: Tell no-one
’til death is conquered.

© Ken Rookes 2017

Other poems responding to the story of the transfiguration can be found here,  here and  here.

You have heard that it was said (2)

Another haiku sequence

You know it is said
eye for eye and tooth for tooth;
this prolongs the fight!

Jesus says revenge
and payback get you nowhere;
grace is what’s needed.

Turn the other cheek.
It’s not easy, but opens
the doorway to peace.

Do the things you should.
Let that be your starting point;
then the extra mile.

Love builds empathy,
enhances all of living,
goes beyond duty.

If somebody begs
or asks to borrow money,
do not refuse them.

Life is in giving;
withholding diminishes.
Live generously.

They say, ‘love your friends.’
Love your enemies as well,
and pray for them, too.

God’s loving regard
falls upon all, good and bad.
Try to be like God.

Love those who love you.
Big deal! The ratbags do that.
Jesus calls for more.

Be servants of love,
sons and daughters of heaven.
Here is perfection.

© Ken Rookes 2017

The first part of this haiku sequence from Matthew chapter 5 is found here.

And a haiku sequence on salt and light, also from Matthew chapter 5 can be found here.