The hour has come

Haiku to unite a people.

The hour has come;
things move inexorably
to their conclusion.

Jesus’ work is done.
Just one last task before him;
shouldn’t be too hard.

We struggle to grasp:
the Son will be glorified
as he meets his death.

Receiving God’s word,
he opened it to his friends,
sharing the wonder.

Touched by divine grace
he speaks of life eternal:
communion with God.

He prays for his friends,
knowing he must soon depart,
leaves them in God’s care.

Father, keep them safe
beyond this hour. Unite them;
ground them in your love.


© Ken Rookes 2017


Unity Haiku


Jesus’ parting prayer
for those who come after him.
That they may be one.


Sent into the world
that love might find fulfilment;
Jesus, among us.


He spoke unity:
I in them and you in me.
Divine indwelling.


© Ken Rookes 2016

As one

Like a football team going into a grand final
after five consecutive wooden spoons
Like the federal cabinet going into an election
when five points down in the polls.
Like a couple, holding hands
as the minister declares them married.
Like a family weeping together
as they share their grief.
Like a gospel choir in joyful exultation
as they make that final chord.
Like migratory geese flying high
and long towards their destination.
Like a group of protesters
Like defiant people
in a conquered land.
Like those who recognise
the truth of kindred suffering.
Like the hearts of the faithful,
overcome by grace.
Like God bringing light into darkness
by taking human flesh.
Like a congregation of God’s people
committed to the gospel
and unafraid of death.
Such is unity.
© Ken Rookes

That they may all be one

Both Mark and Luke give us the story
of the disciples’ indignation
when they encounter the exorcist
who was not from their group,
but who cast out demons in Jesus’ name.
“No worries,” says Jesus.
“If they are not against us they must be for us.”
Something here for the sticklers,
the supra-orthodox and the creedal gatekeepers.
who insist that unity means thinking
and believing the same.
God, Jesus tells us, has no such concerns.
Heretics are welcome in God’s strange kingdom:
they are not to be shunned by the fearful,
whose preoccupation is to play it safe,
and thus, by their orthodoxy,
manage to guarantee themselves a place
in paradise. Whatever that means.
One thing,
and one thing only matters.
One thing that determines
whether we belong to Jesus’ group,
one thing that declares our unity
with all the rest of the heretics
who seek to be numbered among Jesus’ disciples;
simply that we love.
Recklessly indiscriminately,
and with generosity beyond imagining;
that we love.

© Ken Rookes

At one with the Father

At one with the Father,
the mystery of light;
he shines into the darkness,
he chases in the night.

At one with creation,
at home amidst the dust;
the redness at the centre,
the fire and the rust.

At one with the people,
the tears and the chain;
the wandering and homeless,
the loneliness and pain.

He does not shun the struggle,
dark thoughts or the questions;
embracing of the challenge
and seeking its connections.

Comrade to the travellers
on wilderness journey;
searching for that pilgrim goal
through windings and through turnings.

Confronter of the wealthy
disturbing those who rule;
discomfort for the righteous,
the wise sent back to school.

Friend of peace-creators,
holding frightened hands,
at one with those who protest,
and those who make a stand.

At one with the rhythm,
the feel and the pulse;
seeing truth and all things good,
and weeping o’er the false.

Dust and spirit joining,
in love they are united,
reaching out to gather in;
the love, it is requited.

At home among the humble,
they know him by his voice,
he speaks of hope, of truth and life
for all who make the choice.

© Ken Rookes 2013