Don’t tell anyone

Keep it to yourself, this encounter;
this meeting with a miracle.
He who unstopped your ears
and loosed your tongue,
now directs you to tell no one.

Hey there, friend!
How come you can now hear and speak
when you couldn’t yesterday?
What do you mean, you can’t tell me?

It was never going to happen.
You’ll just have to make the best of it, Jesus.
The excited crowds, the adulation,
expectations and demands;
they come with the job.

The job also seems to generate
a growing pack of fierce opponents,
baying from fear,
and anxious;
lest their comfortable world be inverted.

Your adversaries are right to be concerned.
Should they dare to listen, it might be
that these, too, will be required to consider
the demands of love;
and do something about them.

Don’t tell anyone.

© Ken Rookes 2015.

Song of Songs Haiku

Arise my fair one:
the lover’s invitation
to intimacy.

The beloved comes,
eager with youth’s desire,
leaping over hills.

Winter’s fear has passed
giving way to hope and life;
and with much singing.

The fruiting fig trees
join with the fragrant blossoms,
in love’s dance-song call.

Spring’s fecundity
of flowers and turtledoves;
Eros meets Yahweh.

Come away with me
and we shall be joined as one;
Arise my fair one.


© Ken Rookes 2015

Difficult Words Haiku

Eat my flesh, he says,
as if it’s a normal thing;
this deep mystery.

Living forever;
the reward for believers.
Is there something more?

The spirit makes life,
he told those who would listen.
The flesh, conversely.

His difficult words
drove many away. Not me;
there is no other

The fisherman spoke
for us all. Your words are life:
where else can we go?

© Ken Rookes 2015

Abide in me


Do I want to live forever?
It’s not a priority.
My mind struggles with notions of heaven;
of existing somehow, conscious and individual,
beyond one’s allotted days
in this corporeal world.
Across earth’s stones and tracks I journey,
love, rejoice,
wonder and rage.
I breathe its red dust and taste its sorrow;
here I belong
and yet am never quite at home.

Perhaps I never shall be.
Striving, longing and hoping
I seek the company
of those who also yearn
and weep and groan.
My comrades are my abode,
my sisters and brothers are my home,
Perhaps this is what the gospel writer meant
when he spoke of abiding in Jesus,
earth-dweller, brother of us all,
and true child of heaven.
(Whatever that means).


© Ken Rookes 2015

I am the bread of life

We take these words
and fashion them into a ritual.
A ritual meal of great beauty,
layered and filled with meaning
and mystery; which is almost certainly
what the writer had in mind.
Flesh is made bread.

The wheat is ground,
mixed, kneaded,
and baked in an oven. It emerges,
crusty and smelling of friendship.
So we tear the loaves in two,
break off pieces,
and share them.

And somehow, in this bread
and in the wine that accompanies it,
we take into the essence of our selves
the words the Teacher spoke,
the compassion, grace, and love he enacted.
Along with the power of his giving,
his sacrifice.

And somehow,
in this invitation to gather
at his table,
we are also invited to see with his eyes
and to behold the kingdom;
a world that may yet be transformed
by justice, hope and peace.

And in these fragments,
small, humble, broken,
we receive this man;
not to mention
his outrage
and his tears.
© Ken Rookes 2015

Other poems relating to this theme can be found Here. And also Here in a poem of the same name.