Since they failed the final on the hill

Jesus eschewed the messianic secret

and the suffering servant theory

for a more kinesthetic down-to-earth approach.


Apparently the excitement of the Paschal banquet

had drowned out the meaning of the mandatum.*

Even his careful exegesis of Isaiah

bounced off their stony stares forgotten.


To dent their dullness open

And break into their flinty marrow

he mounted a poetic onslaught of their senses—

the folded facial shroud at the tomb,


the feint at the fork on the road to Emmaus,

the twist of his wrist at dinner with the two,

eating fish fillet for breakfast with aplomb,

the press of their flesh on his open chest—


and they finally got the message

as he vanished in the sky

thankful he was more successful

in his second wind, with a more


hands-on in-your-face pedagogy.


Jerome L. McElroy



* The foot-washing command Jesus gave his disciples at the Last Supper.


**Accepted in The Poet’s Pen (December 2011).