A Meditation on the Garden

That night must have been lonely.
His pack of stray dogs had all scattered,
slept, or turned him over.
His family, too, was nowhere around.
I’m not saying Mary abandoned him, but
still, she wasn’t there.

And there he knelt, in the garden
of Gethsemane. I wonder, did they
have heavy-blooming magnolias
in Gethsemane?

But there he knelt, knowing that Peter
slept, that Judas had long since
slipped out quietly into the night.
I don’t think he would have knelt in
moonlight, I’m inclined to believe that he
would have found the shadow of a bush
more suitable for that particular prayer.

But he knelt, and instead of saying,
“This is unjust. Why have you brought this on ME?”
(for Job is a bit of a proto-
-Christ, isn’t he?).

Instead he said something like,
“This is unjust. But Father, do this unjustice
to me. In my hour of greatest
loneliness, you too
abandon me.”
That’s the whole thing.
Because, when all of our friends and
family have gone away,
when we are quite alone, not one of us
would say to God, “you too.”

And then comes the trial, the
flogging, the walking with the cross,
the hanging, the crying out, but
there in the garden he made sure
to stop and just take it all in.
And I guess that gets
through to me somehow.