Caulonian Suite: IV. Venerdi Santo / Good Friday

Venerdi Santo,
Cristo morirà ancora
come ha fatto ogni anno
poichè Dio sa quando.*


They held a New Orleans Funeral for Jesus:
Woodwinds, brass and the big bass drum.
After awhile the rain began to come;
Parishioners popped up their umbrellas,
Madonna was sacked to protect the stars
Spangling perfect electrified hair that
Should have been disheveled in grief.

Christ: unable to awaken, trapped in an opiate nightmare,
Pallid, couch-ridden, sick with flowers,
Widow-borne through the streets on a lacy bier.

Mary: politely dolorosa, her face more composed than that
Of the old mother dressed in black
Hanging out of the window to watch Her pass,
Baptizing the parading crowd with tears
Thrown out like old wash water.

What is left clean and what is soiled?

The sorrow of sin shifts from house to street
To be tracked back in on the slack-shod feet
Of grandchildren, dogs and beggared questions,
Salved in the last moment with words and oil:

quidquid deliquisti / in all that you have failed.

*Good Friday,
Christ will die again
As he’s done every year
Since God knows when.

By bonniemcclellan

Mother, poet, american ex-pat from Texas living in Northern Italy.

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