Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Truce



sitting in the dust
accusers round her, thick—

with pride and spittle
dribbling their bearded chins

fingers pointing, fists shaking, rocks in hand—
the ground trembling with cries for justice

‘such women’ they yell, violent distaste rolling
off their tongues

one by one, they felt the mirrored shame in His words
until only one accuser remained

as she waited for the airless moment to pass
and a stone to pierce her

the two of them breathed slowly together, seconds ticking, until
she put it down, rose up, and began to pardon herself


Copyright 2012 Jennifer Wagner


54 comments:

  1. I love the vividness of this poem. Your words draw me right into the scene and it is so easy to experience it with this woman. Nice use of this prompt!

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    1. Thanks Barbara! Hope you are doing well...prayers for you and all you're going through in the storm's aftermath too.

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  2. Loved this. Sometimes it is true, other people can forgive us, but what good is that if we cannot learn how to forgive ourselves.
    Beautiful writing. Thank goodness there is redemption.

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  3. smiles...a wonderful expansion on the scripture...one of my fav stories...as it gives me hope...i really like how you personalized the end as well...her putting it down and pardoning herself...what a powerful (and true) closure...

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    1. I love the hope within the story too, thanks so much Brian.

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  4. Jennifer, I love that you turned to this biblical story (one of my favorites) for the theme. And the last line sums it up so well--that whole process of self-forgiveness. We not to be easy on ourselves.

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    1. We definitely are not sometimes are we? One of my favorite stories as well. Thank you Victoria.

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  5. Such an interesting piece. You make it just tremendously vivid and the assonance, internal almost rhyme works well too. Well done. k.

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    1. Thanks so much--and thanks for hosting with a great prompt too!

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  6. Wow...the truth is we do have to pardon ourselves, don't we? We are perhaps harder on ourselves than others. A thoughtful write.

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  7. You paint a powerful picture. Nicely done.

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  8. A lovely portrayal of self forgiveness.

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    1. Thank you very much Lisa--always appreciate your thoughts.

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  9. What a lovely turn around of this beautiful passage of forgiveness from His Words ~

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    1. Thanks Grace...I think forgiveness is one of the most beautiful things.

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  10. Your ending knocks the whole poem out of the park. Fantastic! We are our own harshest critics. Great write!

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    1. Thanks so much Sherry--I agree, we can be our own worst critics indeed.

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  11. Very touching... I really like "pride and spittle
    dribbling"...

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  12. very cool play on the bible story... i once played the woman in a musical and oh how i can feel her...the desperation and hope and always wondered if she changed her life after that encounter

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    1. I have always wondered about her too. Would be cool to see that play!

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  13. so very powerful. i really like the feel to this, especially how you wrapped it up with the last line. great poem.

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  14. Really tremendous writing, very powerful and compelling. I felt this.

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    1. Thanks for feeling it Dave, always appreciate your thoughts.

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  15. Oh! It's like a painting of words. Very well-defined and vivid. I respect and adore this kind of poems. Thanks for sharing.
    Visit my blog @ another part of me

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  16. Christ and Mary Magdalene? Let he who is not a sinner cast a stone? The last line was just great.Wonderfully done.

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  17. Loved your poetic take on the Biblical story.

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  18. wow...I held my breath through the end. I hope you will join me and others around the world in creating a gratitude quilt of words. To learn more about this project and how you can participate read the white box at the top of my blog. It would be wonderful to have you be a part of this.

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  19. Very good -- this reminds me of one of the stories of Jesus.

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    1. Definitely was the inspiration here. Thanks yuanfields.

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  20. Ah, I see that AJ And Abin felt the same as I. A cool story -- and apparently, very apocryphal.

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  21. Very well done-love that "airless moment to pass" really held the tension perfectly. :-)

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  22. This was so string and powerful ... beautifully captured !!!

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  23. Intense opening imagery that really pulls the reader in and a surprise ending, very nice.

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  24. Splendidly written, and wise beyond words. Caught by 'pride and spittle dribbling' which is very good.

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  25. I wonder if one could even do this in our day, the hypocrisy is so entrenched, and the self-righteousness so pronounced. Well-drawn.

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    1. Maybe not in this manner, but in other ways I suppose. Thanks hedge, always appreciate your comments.

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  26. this reminded me of mary magdalene, very vivid.

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Thank you for your thoughts!