The Formerly Blind Man Remembers

by | May 2, 2023 | 6 Pure in Heart, Poetry

The Formerly Blind Man Remembers (poem)
by J. Marshall Jenkins

“Tell no one,”
he insisted after spitting
on dust and rubbing the mud in
my eyes until I saw, before anything else,

his face.
Now I understand: Time
ripens like a fig, does no good plucked
too soon, no sweetness, no cure for boils. 

Hush? Wait?
Swallow such joy? I saw
but did not know why, did not know
him until he was lifted up naked and bleeding

to death,
until he called the name
of a weeping, frightened woman who
found no dead body in his tomb, until he broke bread

for addled friends
by the road, until he commissioned
wary old friends to pour themselves out 
as he did, as he will always, unseen but strangely known.

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Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God (Matthew 5:8).
Image: “Christ Healing the Blind Man,” El Greco, ca. 1570, Metropolitan Museum of Art, Public Domain.


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