Today’s Lenten poem from Education for Justice is by Thomas Merton.
When wind and winter turn our vineyard
To a bitter Calvary,
What hands come out and crucify us
Like the innocent vine?
How long will starlight weep as sharp as thorns
In the night of our desolate life?
How long will moonlight fear to free the naked prisoner?
Or is there no deliverer?
A mob of winds, on Holy Thursday, come like murderers
And batter the walls of our locked and terrified souls.
Our doors are down, and our defense is done.
Good Friday’s rains, in Roman order,
March, with sharpest lances, up our vineyard hill.
More dreadful than St. Peter’s cry
When he was being swallowed in the sea,
Cries out our anguish: “O! We are abandoned!”
When in our life we see the ruined vine
Cut open by the cruel spring,
Ploughed by the furious season!
As if we had forgotten how the whips of winter
And the cross of April
Would all be lost in one bright miracle.
For look! The vine on Calvary is bright with branches!
See how the leaves laugh in the light,
And how the whole hill smiles with flowers:
And know how all our numbered veins must run
With life, like the sweet vine, when it is full of sun.