The human had been tied to the whipping
post, a pillar that had been used many
times before by the Romans (and ages
earlier by the Greeks–but for a much
different purpose). Now, his pale skin looks
translucent (should it not have been darker,
with more blood?) His mother recalled his bris.
They had both cried then, too.
A strong young man, broad back, thick arms, now on
hands and knees, but head raised with eyes open:
seeing a cross that’s even worse ahead…
Still, unflinching, resigned–no, determined
to go on, face more pain, indignities,
shame, even death (there is no sign of God.)
Steve was a classmate at McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago. We’ve been friends for 47 years. A published poet, Steve was the Senior Minister of the McKinley Presbyterian Church and Director of the McKinley Foundation (campus ministry) at the University of Illinois for many years. He hosts “Keepin’ the Faith” on WILL, Illinois Public Radio, and lives in a geothermally-heated house on the prairie outside Urbana, IL where his neighbors often spot his kites riding the winds of the prairie skies.