This Poem Is So Powerful! What A Creative Perspective!

Deep faith requires deep understanding. Deep understanding comes from time and effort in digesting the messages that Jesus Christ has left for us.

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The Adulterous Woman: Jn. 8: 3-11

I

It is fear that rules us now.
Fear has me by the hair.
An entire company of fear
drags me through the streets.
The dust is choking me.
Fear dries my mouth.
I am afraid that I will die!

This is a man’s world.
They use us for their pleasures,
then, when it suits their designs,
they throw us to the wolves.
That one there, the one
pulling at his boyish beard,
is the one who took me to bed.
Now he stands sheepishly
deep within this crowd that wants
to condemn only me here.

Stone me?  Stone him!

II

Who is this I am brought before?
His eyes look into mine
as if he knows me.
Who is he to judge me?
Why do they bring me to him?

Moses!  Moses!  Always Moses!

I know that I am a sinner,
but my sins are merely those of desire.
My sins bend to simple pleasures.
These hypocrites destroy and condemn,
hold the law over our heads,
like swords and stones,
all in the holy name of Moses.
Moses did not have laws enough.
These make more and more
to keep us beneath their thumbs.
Moses lead us out of slavery;
these make slaves of us all.

But it is fear that grips me here.
I don’t want to die!

III

“Stone her!  She has been caught
in the very act of adultery.
This is what Moses said.
What do you say, Sir?”

What is this silence?

You bend down to me
I see something in your eyes
that I have never seen before.
I am somehow less afraid.

What is it you write in the dust?
Why have their faces gone ashen?

I hear you say,
“Let he who has no sin in him
cast the first stone.”

What is this silence?
I hear only the shuffle of feet,
the rustle of garments.
No stones!
No stones!
Only this gentle silence.

You lift me up.
You look into my eyes.
I hear power in your voice,
a gentle power I’ve never heard before.
You smile at me.
I want to fall into your arms.
Where is the fear?

“Where are your accusers, woman?”
You say, almost laughing.
“Has not one condemned you?”

“No, Sir.”

“Neither do I. Go then.

Woman,  know that you are
beautiful in your soul.
Sin no more then.
Be who you were made to be.”

“Yes! Yes, Rabbi. I will sin no more.”

IV

I am alone.
This one they call Jesus
has made me look
into my very self.
What is this welling up
I feel within me?
Oh, God.  Let it never pass.

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Dan Doyle is a husband, father, grandfather, Vietnam veteran, and retired professor of Humanities at Seattle University. He taught 13 years at the high school level and 22 years at the university level. He spends his time now babysitting his granddaughter. He is a poet and a blogger as well. Dan holds an AA degree in English Literature, a BA in Comparative Literature, and an MA in Theology, and writes regularly for The Veterans Site blog.