By Rowan Wyatt
I remember at school during an R.E. lesson being incredibly confused by the notion of ‘Good Friday’. I walked up to the desk behind which sat Mr. Purcer our chain smoking, alcoholic Religious Education teacher, he eyed me warily as I approached, expecting mockery. He looked at me from behind glasses which partially hid eyes showing signs of having given up, and said with a slight sigh “Yes Rowan”?
I asked what was to be one of the most profound questions I had ever asked, for as an angry child of 14 I had no idea of faith. “What’s so good about Friday if Jesus was murdered on that day? Shouldn’t it be called Bad Friday?” I asked earnestly. Startled by being asked an interesting question for a change he sat me down and ignoring the near rioting going in in the rabble filled classroom, proceeded to explain to me, for half an hour, what was meant by Good Friday.
The whole thing was laid out for me. No vicar, pastor or Christian had ever taken the time to explain what happened on that day, high on the splintering wooden gallows and what it meant for me, FOR ME! Up till that point nothing had been done for me. My Family didn’t want me, my only friends were books and my beloved Grandfather had recently died. But I learned that day that someone loved me enough to die for me, FOR ME! Not only that, I was no longer alone for he was always with me and loved me, LOVED ME!!
So Good Friday finally made sense. I pray it finally gets to make sense for the rest of the world which is as riotous as that classroom where I finally learnt what it meant.
On the Cross R.R. Wyatt
The sound of hammer on nail
Still reverberates around the hill
As your head sinks to your chest
Your last breath gone
And a single raindrop falls.
A tear from God as his son
Gives way and leaves his sight
The tortured bloody frame
Hanging in shame
A victim of our iniquity.
The sky blackens and seethes
As the rain begins to fall
Cleansing the torn limp body
Washing it clean
Sluicing the blood to the earth.
A crack of thunder resounds
And the gathered scatter afeared
Just a few remain, bearing witness
To a beloved’s death
Yanked with indignity from the wood.
And the storm in its ferocity wails
Cracking deep the temple in rage
With a grief profound as truth
As the lamb slain
Is taken to a tomb, for a while.
© Rowan Robert Wyatt 2015 Taken from the forthcoming poetry volume Lux Aeturna