Good Friday at the Jewellers

We coin the hollows of your beaten face
and hang your agony in hall-marked silver,
display in church your prosperous embrace,
fast in the golden cross a diamond splinter.

So we efface your crucified reproach,
betrayed by pains beyond our sympathy;
your agony has cast beyond your reach
a world beyond the reach of agony.
Christ! How we make you distant, splendid, rich,
we cannot live with your humanity.


Filed under christianity, literature, Poems

4 responses to “Good Friday at the Jewellers

  1. ‘Dream of the Rood’ – where the blood and wood alternate hallucinatingly with the gold and rubies.

    • malcolmguite

      Yes, in comparison with The Dream, this poem only expresses one side of something, pointing to extravagance as a means of evasion. The other side is of course Mary Magdalene breaking the precious jar of ointment and anointing his feet where beautiful extravagance is an expression of intimacy not a defence against it. The Dream of the Rood gets it well, where the rood is bejeweled, but through the splendor the dreamer sees even more clearly the rough wood and the blood, and the splendour celebrates and does not disguise the passion

  2. Pingback: Tweets that mention Good Friday at the Jewellers « Malcolm Guite --

  3. Thank you. This is beautiful.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.