A little Easter reading for you

Easter is my favorite holiday. (I can’t say that without humming a song some friends of mine made up in high school with that sentence as its main lyric — but it’s still true.) I love the promise of new life and the coming of Spring, and the bunnies and chicks and flowers and candy, but especially I love the reminder of Jesus Christ’s resurrection and Atonement. I love Him and am so grateful to Him and to our Heavenly Father for giving us everything worth having, and especially for giving me the gift of knowing I can still be with my family after this life.

I know Easter’s almost over, but if we try to keep the spirit of Christmas all year round, I think we can do the same for Easter. So here’s a little post-Easter reading for you.

First, a poem by John Updike. (Thanks so much, Darlene, for introducing me to this poem on your blog.)

“Seven Stanzas at Easter” from Telephone Poles and Other Poems by John Updike.

Make no mistake: if He rose at all
it was as His body;
if the cells’ dissolution did not reverse, the molecules
reknit, the amino acids rekindle,
the Church will fall.

It was not as the flowers,
each soft Spring recurrent;
it was not as His Spirit in the mouths and fuddled
eyes of the eleven apostles;
it was as His Flesh: ours.

The same hinged thumbs and toes,
the same valved heart
that — pierced — died, withered, paused, and then
regathered out of enduring Might
new strength to enclose.

Let us not mock God with metaphor,
analogy, sidestepping transcendence;
making of the event a parable, a sign painted in the
faded credulity of earlier ages:
let us walk through the door.

The stone is rolled back, not papier-mache,
not a stone in a story,
but the vast rock of materiality that in the slow
grinding of time will eclipse for each of us
the wide light of day.

And if we will have an angel at the tomb,
make it a real angel,
weighty with Max Planck’s quanta, vivid with hair,
opaque in the dawn light, robed in real linen
spun on a definite loom.

Let us not seek to make it less monstrous,
for our own convenience, our own sense of beauty,
lest, awakened in one unthinkable hour, we are
embarrassed by the miracle,
and crushed by remonstrance.

Next, if you haven’t already seen the current guest post at Mormon Mommy Blogs by DeNae, you should go read it — it’s funny and also very appropriate to the season. You can find it at her blog by clicking here.

This entry was posted in Books/Movies/TV/etc., Me thinking about stuff. Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to A little Easter reading for you

  1. Melanie J says:

    I have never seen this before. What a fantastic poem. This is much more my thing than more traditional rhymed verse. It really made me think. Thanks for sharing it.

  2. Kristina says:

    Neat poem. And the bunnies made me smile. I heart bunnies.

  3. Pilcrow says:

    Thanks also. Majestic.

  4. the MomB says:

    I wonder what happened to my comment (which should have come after Kristina’s and before Pilcrow’s. It’s a magnificent poem and I too thank you for finding and posting it.

  5. OhSusanna says:

    Wow. I love that poem.

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