Resurrection Skirt by Mark Nielsen April 12, 2009
“Can you get the boy started on a bath?”
she called out from the bedroom
early Easter morning,
as I watched an angelic and surreal
black carpenter ant
crawl up our living room wall
toward his presumed escape to heaven
through the skylight.
“I can help bathe him on the back end,” she continued.
“I just need to finish myself up first.”
She had been sweetly concerned all morning
about what to wear to church,
consulting me ( of all people?!? )
on whether her dark floral print skirt
was colorful enough
to express the inner joy we feel–
wondering whether its purple flowers
on a black and brown background
were enough to symbolize our resurrected hope,
emerging from the black soil and rotted leaves
of a necessary winter.
“You don’t need to finish yourself,”
I encouraged her.
“You are already complete and beautiful,
like fine Wedgewood porcelain.
(and indeed, I thought,
the important washing and preparations
all happened while we slept).
“Besides…” I offered,
“even if we showed up in burlap bags to church,
they would still have to accept us
just as we are
according to the terms Jesus laid out.”
“Okay…” she said nervously,
“but let’s wait till next year
before we pull a stunt like that.”