The Resurrection: A Pantoum

by Paul Hooker

Before the dawn, he slips into the flow
so silently no star in heaven hears
nor earth beneath, nor even hell below.
It seems it hasn’t been like this for years.

Silent now. No star in heaven hears
the subtle, scuttling last retreat of death.
He thinks it hasn’t been like this for years;
it takes such effort just to draw a breath.

The subtle, scuttling last retreat of death
rolls the stone aside, and now the breeze
assists him as he draws unsteady breath.
Nothing in this life is done with ease.

Stone rolled aside. The movement of the breeze
wafts the acrid dust stirred from the floor.
Not so, he thinks; the one thing done with ease
is dying. Living always summons more.

Wafting, acrid dust stirs on the floor.
Another moment: could he not abide
in dying? Living summons. There is more:
they want his blood, their fingers in his side.

Another moment. Rest, and just abide.
But then the muscles twitch and digits move;
the blood flows into fingers at his side,
rising from the deep abyss of love.

The muscles twitch, and now the digits move.
Neither earth beneath, nor hell below
can stop this rising river, deep with love.
The time has come. He slips into its flow.