It was a Friday afternoon

But the day had not been marked

out for crucifixion

Because the sky was not black

And I, a professional Simon, was

rushing off to celebrate

Already done with my week’s work

Of helping others carry crosses.

That’s why I was so surprised

That you stopped me in high daylight

And wrestled a cross into full view

Letting it writhe live


The struggle you could not articulate.

I tried to wrestle words

Onto your cross

When your pain wanted only a towel

To accept and soothe

And blot away, if only temporarily,

The pain that pulses from wound.

I will never forget your face

Neither will Veronica

Left with the towel, a shroud

Impressed, stamped, indelible

With the pain and the beauty

Of the suffering incarnate Christ.