a word of affection, #3

From a sonnet cycle, based on the seven sayings of the cross.

Near the cross of Jesus stood his mother, his mother’s sister, Mary the wife of Clopas, and Mary Magdalene. When Jesus saw his mother there, and the disciple whom he loved standing nearby, he said to his mother, “Dear woman, here is your son.” John 19:25-26

When she first said it, she was very young:
“Be it unto me according to thy word.”
Then a prophet said a sword would pierce her soul,
just one of many mysteries she had heard.
But at last she comprehended what it meant—
the body she had cradled now grew weak;
she watched in silence as his limbs grew numb
and leaned on John, and listened to Christ speak.
For whips and thorns and nails were not enough
to keep her Son from sensing her great need;
he asked his closest friend to care for her:
it was His final, fully human deed.
he could not die until his work was done:
he shifted, groaned and said, “Behold thy son.”

©2001, Wally Metts

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