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Easter 2022

In silence, night retires with a yawn—
Its starlit labor blessed by God’s, “Well done.”
And as the weary world awakes to dawn,
The auric radiance of the risen sun

Illumes a garden where an empty tomb
Bears witness to the One no longer there—
The Son and Lamb of God—who faced his doom
And freed me by his blood from sin’s despair.

He says, for me he will “prepare a place,”
And if I seek to follow Him I’ll find
That when I die, through faith by saving grace,
I’ll leave my own, now empty tomb behind.

Then shall my weary soul awake to don
The auric radiance of the risen Son.

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James A. Tweedie is a retired pastor living in Long Beach, Washington. He has written and published six novels, one collection of short stories, and three collections of poetry including Mostly Sonnets, all with Dunecrest Press. His poems have been published nationally and internationally in The Lyric, Poetry Salzburg (Austria) Review, California Quarterly, Asses of Parnassus, Lighten Up Online, Better than Starbucks, WestWard Quarterly, Society of Classical Poets, and The Chained Muse.


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11 Responses

  1. Paul Freeman

    You’ve captured the significance of Easter to Christians beautifully, James.

    Thanks for the read.

    Reply
    • James A. Tweedie

      Thank you, Paul. Your name, by the way, proclaims both the Easter and Passover messages more clearly than my poem.

      Alleluia.

      Reply
  2. Susan Jarvis Bryant

    This is a lovely poem for Easter. I particularly like; “The auric radiance of the risen sun/Son” – great word play!

    Reply
  3. Jeff Eardley

    Thank you James for a great read at this special time. It is fine and sunny over here but the world is slowly going crazy. Your Christian message is so welcome today. Thank you.

    Reply
  4. Cynthia Erlandson

    Beautiful, James, especially “I’ll leave my own, now empty tomb behind.” What a great thought!

    Reply
  5. James A. Tweedie

    Thank you to all who left a comment.

    Happy Easter!

    Christ is risen indeed!

    Reply
  6. Margaret Coats

    James, a nice use of unexpected repeton. You catch the reader’s attention with the poetic word “auric” and then carry it to the next stanza with another poetic word, “illumes.” And indeed, as the sermon I heard today said, all tombs will someday be empty. But I wonder why you said “weary soul” in line 13. Will the soul sleep until the body leaves the tomb? Or is the empty tomb the body that the soul leaves when it dies?

    Reply
  7. James A. Tweedie

    My soul being weary of this mortal life, yearning for the ‘place prepared’ the “house not made with human hands’ to remove the corruptible and put on incorruption, etc. My 100 year old mother was admitted to hospital several days ago and is in palliative care waiting to pass from this life to the next. She has been “weary” of this life for a good number of years although fully alert in her mind. That is what I meant by “weary.” There has been much debate over the centuries regarding the concept of “soul sleep.”

    I believe there is a great lack of understanding about this with the key being the biblical idea of time. There is chronos time, which is linear and there is kairos time which is spacial–ie. the fullness of time from God’s perspective (one day is as a thousand years and a thousand years is as a day with God). As we await the final resurrection we view it in chronos time–which makes it appear as if those who died are waiting a long time before rising which is often described as “soul sleep.” But when we die we leave chronos time behind and enter kairos time which is why Jesus can say to the thief, “TODAY you will be with me in Paradise.” I believe that our experience of resurrection is immediate. Bach’s cantata 106 sums this up nicely for me, “Gottes Zeit is die Allerbeste Zeit.” which translates, God’s time is the very best time.” This is not scripture but is true to scripture. God’s time is kairos time (which is also why Revelation 13:8 is able to declare that “the Lamb was slain from the creation of the world”. or the “foundation of the world.” Most commentaries interpret this through the lens of chronos time and get it all twisted and convoluted. It simply means that in God’s time (kairos) God the Son (who, through the Incarnation we know as Jesus Christ) has ALWAYS been the crucified Lamb of God–a mystery revealed to us through his death on the cross (which we perceived within the limits of chronos time).

    In any case, that is what I meant by “weary soul” and how I am responding to your reference to “soul sleep.”

    When my mother dies she will not have to wait around for resurrection. For her, the trumpet will sound and she will put on her new immortality in a twinkling of an eye.

    That, at least, is my understanding of scripture.

    Reply
    • Margaret Coats

      I see that your “Easter 2022” necessarily reflects on your mother and her soul long weary of earthly corruption. I have read the proper texts from the Mass to Beg for a Happy Death, in prayer that her passage will be happy. The opening words (based on Psalm 13) are “Enlighten my eyes, that I never sleep in death, lest at any time my enemy say, ‘I have prevailed against him.'” Readings are Romans 14:7-12 (which is the Biblical support for the doctrine of the particular judgment of each individual upon death) and Luke 21:34-36. Concerning views of time, I think of the “Eternal Present” Saint Augustine describes in his Confessions, as whence and how God sees all things. Back to the Mass, the versicle between the readings, which changed when the Easter season began last night, concludes “My heart is ready. I will sing, I will give praise with my glory. Alleluia.”

      Reply
      • James A. Tweedie

        That Easter versicle is spectacular! “Alleluia!” indeed!

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