His body [a poem for Eastertide]

— Anna Hecker on Unsplash

His body 

His body hanged, unjust decree,
Pierced hand and side by spike and spear,
Displayed in shame on horrid tree—yet
Trusting the Judge he did forbear.
His body choked, emptied of breath,
Laid dormant in the airless grave,
Devised to quell his voice in death—yet
His plea of grace their sin forgave.
His body cursed, sentenced to hell,
Bound fast with cloth in stony tomb,
Sealed and secured, like prison cell—yet
Blessed to become a wondrous womb.
His body bruised, drained of its blood,
Buried deep in the ready earth,
Meant to remain his last abode—yet
Pleased to midwife his second birth.
His body raised, flesh, blood, and bone,
Bearing the scars that testify,
Hell is plundered! Death’s sting is gone!—thus
He makes his grave our gate to life.
Heed, then, and hear the angel say:
“Why look for life among the dead?
He is not here, where he once lay—for
He has risen, just as he said.”

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