What, indeed, is this stuff;
the subject of the pilatean enquiry
nearly two millennia ago?
A large group of self-appointed custodians
recently forfeited any claim
to represent truth,
having betrayed their Master
by placing the needs of reputation
ahead of the fruits of compassion and justice
of which he was wont to speak.
They were not the first.
There are others, so caught up
with notions of what is and is not correct,
that they become blind to what might be true.
We squeeze it, push it,
poke and prod it into strangely shaped vessels
that can never properly contain it,
and then express our surprise when it bursts out,
spilling its disquieting trouble
over those standing too near.
We search anxiously for something convenient
with which to wipe it away.
Like the Roman governor
we don’t really expect an answer to our question.
The prisoner’s silence serves us well;
we welcome the stillness,
pretending that it is the same as peace.
But our evasions remain incomplete,
and in the determined hush
the remembering persists.
We recall his teachings, his defiant words
that tell of hearing and seeing and reaching.
Other tales intrude too,
including his own troubled story,
about to be made complete
with betrayal, bleeding and weeping.
The stories stealthily invade our silence;
to weave around and through a living parable
catching us up into his unavoidable truth
with all its disturbing expectations.
© Ken Rookes 2012
A bit of a work in progress. I may return to it later in the week.