Why do you strike me?

He spoke his truth in places
where all could hear,
without any concern for caution.
Recklessly trusting in the God he called Father,
his courage could not be questioned,
bringing its own accusation
to those who had compromised. The voice of integrity
receives an uncertain welcome.
Truth is an expendable annoyance,
a disturbing inconvenience
for those who worship at the altars
of power, wealth and fear;it will be dealt with.
Speaking openly and passionately
of love’s primacy, the man is unbending,
apparently unconcerned about the consequences
of his unauthorised utterances.
When finally Jesus is brought to account
he answers with the same disregard
for the opinions of his accusers.
A local walloper in the service
of the chief priests and Pharisees
feels compelled to strike him on the face
for his presumed disrespect.
Why do you strike me
when I have said nothing wrong?
he asks on his own behalf,and perhaps for the sake of the millions of innocent
speakers of truth
in the centuries before and since.
Hold firm, Jesus,
there is worse to come. 

© Ken Rookes 2013



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