christ, daring to contain yourself within a body’s hoary, bounded skin, you daily refused transcendence — the easy flight out from earth & dirt & scourge — to practice presence, the minute-by-minute fact of nails through bone. you could have worn flesh lightly, loose as a billowed seine net, slipping out & back with the small silver grace of a minnow. choosing your moments, you’d have stayed just for wine, and fruity ointment sopped onto your feet, mary’s hair languid & fragrant as lilies upon your thigh. why trouble yourself with leprosy & vinegar, blisters & bloody flux, all the unwholesome stain & mess which is the human design? you looked best in soft raiment & smart beard, not stinking of blood and craven sweat, or sprawled in the desert, starveling & ugly as an anorexic. kin to angels, they could have made your table of friends, their virgin forms aromatic with cloves & ozone, their mannerly wings concealing a multitude of fine sins. even nearly too late, after meeting judas’s greedy lips, you could have deserted the burdensome package of vulnerable tissue and stressed bone, left the puppet body to spasm & break insensate on the cross. all good friday, you would have gleefully flown safe, unhindered & apathetic, free & as far from human as a bird of the air or god.