What a beautiful day for a plague.
Two days left until Passover, still
plenty of time for frogs and boils and blood.
The live oak sends out its pollen abundantly.
Good thing we’re all wearing our masks.
When Christ rode into Jerusalem for his Seder
there were no masks, there were no gloves
to protect him from the Romans or the crowds.
The lepered and the scalled. The galled
and gall. The fronds beat but did not purify
the air. Imagine being cleansed by someone’s blood.
It seems a paradox of epic proportions. Sunday
morning of no complacencies and no peignoirs.
Were the Gospels his memoirs? If so we know
he tired of being touched. Even holiness has limits.
I turned on The Ten Commandments last night
right when the angel of death was coming. Bad
timing. Right when the oak was putting out
its pollen. And the glorious finch was calling
forth its song. Jesus Christ Superstar is on.
Jascha reminds me I once said the secret
ending to all poems is “now blow me” the way
the secret ending to all fortune cookies is “in bed.”
Is it any comfort to hear that a lame man
took up his bed or that one Lazarus was
lifted of his sores; another Lazarus lifted
from behind a rock (though this is not that
movie, that was The Greatest Story Ever Told
which is too wide to watch on television). God
of Israel God of Islam God of the whole box set:
I do not know if I can sit through another
Technicolor plague. That angel has not
forgotten where I live. Goldfinch hovering.
My friend Lucie used to say she bought
all the movies she wanted to see before
she died, and now she worried she’d never
see them. Then she died. I hope she saw
the Venice of Senso or Death in Venice.
No matter what, at the end of an Italian
movie it always says “Fine.” Things work
out fine. La Dolce Vita’s fine. Everything is
rosy. It seems a fine way to end. Ah, God . . .
Now blow me.
Author photo by Ben Decastro