Sunday, November 13, 2016

Harvey S. Mozolak

dark hued clothing
of the poor or chosen poverty
wrapped close
compact cocoon
hands hidden
undoubtably faithfully laced
neck bowed
face bent to the floor
eyes closed
cinctured by silent lashes
though one cannot tell that
but if they see
it is stone and earth and dust
knees together
bent like a crushed locust
whose spring must be souled
for its feet are flatted
arches overturned
the motionless body
an inverted chancel
belly and back
as low as can go
to creep begging eleison
kyrie before the altar
icon-ed in golden glow
illuminated by sand-buried tapers
among a score of tourists
snapping memories saved
on cell phones
like prayers during takeoff
for safe trips home
to lesser heavens

saint’s repose
Harvey S. Mozolak

he is to the side
of the altar where The Presence
is lifted in holiness
to be spooned to waiting lips
whispering Amens
many most go first
to the sepulchered side
where the bones of the saint reside
someone a cleric who saved the city
or some such thing
and there they light candles
and kiss the box that bears
his sacred remains
a woman enters with a priest
after making an offering
is one disparaging thought
but perhaps a parish member
who frequents this hour of prayer
where the Father unlocks the case for her
beneath are trays of medals
tiny icons
small sacred gifts
and tangles of piled prayer beads
awaiting answers
in repeated petitions
for less than a city-full of need
he then unfolds layers of brocade cloth
to reveal a place where the woman
can kiss and then several other places
for her lips as the coffin is closed
locked and then the line is freed
to again enter and see the darkened
alcove of death awaiting eternity
to the side
of the one who empowers
lesser hopes
and kisses us with bread’s given body
and the sweet wine of his blood shed
in the darkness of our need
the only flame that burns
beyond repose

Harvey S. Mozolak

kings are in charge
and the charges were
that he was no monarch
and in fact it was claimed
a usurper to the king
an undoer of the royalty of state
threat to the loyalty of priestly heights
attained by repeated sacrifice
and so he was given
a purple robe of forced guffaws
diademed with dripping bloodied barbs
driven to a throne that commanded
his breath to slowly cease
his trunk and limbs to limp and slump
become a stump of God
of thirty-three yet one eternal ring
there sceptered
with a spear axed to his heart
thus heaven charged
deep into all earth’s rebellions
the whole seditious lot
dying with him
to be free
and crowned sons and daughters
of the sole sovereign whose love
can never be drained
of its charge
and saving pole

Christ the King
Luke 23. 33-43

Dominum regnum
Harvey S. Mozolak

the skull
the chamber of the king
earth's throbbing thought beneath
God too shall not last

crucified with
advisers left and right
fellow accused of crimes
his, forgiveness
theirs, not knowing heaven
in what they do

lots to divide
the kingdom covering
or the rule of chance
the unclothed choice
at the shivering hill

scoffing and sour wine
God decantered acrid
king of bitter chosenness
label now eternity
at a peculiar place
for particular people
in this strange time of acerbic salvation

save yourself
to name aright and not to know
is to hold the cure
and flush it down the drain
with spittle

recall me
we wear alike the condemnation
his, an unjust sentence
ours, the deserving of our deeds
recall me King before you
this, my conviction:
censure me with your innocence

this day
with certainty
we will walk together bidden

to be unhidden in the Garden
my shame cloaking
your nakedness
thrown today over the throne
of holiness

Christ the King

unwounding is forgiveness
Harvey S. Mozolak

cross-stained with compassion
he is
for those who press pain like thorns
hammer hatred
and spear fear
into flesh

Lectionary 33
Luke 21.5-19

not a hair of your head
Harvey S. Mozolak

a tripping field
we walk across
rocks left like checkers
stumbling without the squares
and king-me row
chess figures disfigured
crown here
black miter fallen there
slotted parapet and white horse ear
stones and shattered stocks
plundered pillars
of a game which has no rules
no safe castling
en passant or resignation
except one
touch the ground
and you must move
the hand above
allows the play
soul without perishing

Lectionary 33
Luke 21. 5-19

the mighty loss and gain
Harvey S. Mozolak

a widowhood thrown over
the veil
a great city sadness
stepping stones stumbling
across the acropolis
of war-mounted
rocks strewn like abandoned play toys
in the fit of an angry child
or goods fallen from a cart
overturned in the marketplace
crushed by a charging chariot
into puddles of laundry
bath and toilet sewage
the smell
the stench
the only holding of them together

rich and royal
rectangular levels askew
a consideration askance
to eyes leveled by tears
and throats clutched by bubbles
of grief and fear
and hunger for table and Temple

one stone not upon another stone
memory caught like clothing
ripped on a nail…
unsealing death’s destruction
and setting the cornerstone
of a holy and civic vision
of the grave unstopped
peace unearthed
the resurrection army of angels
un-mortar mortality
and clay begins to live
and society with God
embodied in new mounted praise

Christ the King
Luke 23.33-43

Christ the crowned
Harvey S. Mozolak

when they came
to the place
that is called The Skull
a cranium of empty earth
thoughtless lump
lifted against the sky
cortical high hemisphere
drained of blood and life

they crucified Jesus
nervously nailing
spine to stem
as emotionlessly
as hammer kisses to a nail
above the crowd's scoffing curses
and soldiers' mocking
criminals, one on his right
and one on his left
forgive them, Father
they cannot understand
what they stand under
in condemnation and release
clothing now a game of gamble
for the covering
and winning of others

King of the Jews
the toast
with wasted wine
one crucified
who almost can no longer steal
any time at all
rides him rudely
the other giving back his last breaths
as rebuke to the remonstrance
and to request remembrance
is under the same condemnation
as God
but without innocence
do kings recall slaves who have begged?
servants who have bowed
and subjects who humbly pray?

you will be a blooming blossom
on the band of bloody blessing
flowering with me throned astalk
surrounding the garden of God