Lenten reflection on scripture — in the temple

(Mark 11: 15-18)

I am a catcher of pigeons,
a lucky one
on this morning of
upturned tables and feathers.

I do not steal coins,
even though they roll to my toes,
even though I was praying
in this house of prayer
that somehow I would not need
always yo be so poor.

And yet I was raised
never to make an offering
of anything
that I did not earn.

It tumbles the world
upside down
that someone like me
should be given
what I have not deserved,

even a serendipitous
bundle of wings,
hollow bones, bright eyes –
a fitting sacrifice
for my newborn child.

Someone said there was anger
on both sides.
I don’t remember that –
only how I felt

when I opened my fingers
to let the bird fly.

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