The Back Side of God

How his bitter weeping stirred me as he ran off in the night.
I’d provoked him just beforehand into cursing up a fright,
For I’d seen him in the circle of this man they now accused:
Just a common country peasant causing trouble with his views.

We all knew it couldn’t end well for a con who’d crossed the priests:
If he’d thought himself a savior, then his saving days had ceased.
Still, his punishment seemed callous to a simple servant maid,
And I pitied his poor pupil: small, distraught, astray, dismayed.

When they led him out to Pilate I sneaked off to see the show,
Though I knew I’d sense a sickness when the blood began to flow.
I still can’t explain the power that allured me to the scene,
But the way he’d moved his convert whispered love I’d never seen.

But too late! As I approached it, in my mind I turned and fled,
For the sound of cruel flogging made my stomach wrench with dread,
And I thought of God in heaven who they say is kind and good,
And I wished He’d show His mercy in the glorious way He could.

Then a force upon my torso that I felt as if a hand
In some way compelled me onward as if to a promised land.
Through the jeering mob it steered me, though I dared not lift my eyes,
To a little nook well sheltered from their scorn and awful cries.

From the safety of this cleft inside the massive stony wall
I can hear the purposed breathing of the man they fiercely maul.
Then I peek . . . I feel the whip tear in . . . and now I’m overawed,
For I’ve glimpsed a glory etched with grace: the back side of my God.

Ed Morris, 2013

This page copyright © 2013 Edward A. Morris.  Created February 9, 2013.  Last updated February 11, 2013.

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