READING THE GOSPEL OF MARK
--for Byron, Jim, Eliseo, Dean,
come through the Baptist's belt.
Cinturón de cuero. Life in the mountains.
Re-treat, renewal, another way
to the way. Jesus thought so.
Wild water, wild water crossing.
Getting out of town.
What's heard on the street,
getting here. Wild horses
couldn't keep me away.
camel-skin and dreadlocks,
straight to word and wilderness
coming out of the water.
What you've done
with your 40 days.
What I really want to ask you
is how you've come back from the wilds
after 40 days. Tell me about
your first 40 days of marriage.
Shaking off anesthesia after surgery
when you got the really bad news,
the news that took you out.
Where've you been?
That man in the woods,
the mountain guy, they took his head,
beheaded him. Didn't he baptize you,
something like that? Was that him?
Somebody's girl friend said,
Bring him to me on a plate?
Jesus never got over it, uh-uh.
Never did. Those temper tantrums,
family calling him out, You're crazy,
surly responses, taunting. Dead fig tree!
Ever hear Christians on that one?
Makes me cringe. Until I remember John.
Jesus never forgot him. The rest of us.
We're slow. We don't know
the all of it, but we know what he carried
on that walk towards power. Jesus
crossed that river walking into the land
of promise carrying John.
I'm still tangled up. Still reading
Mark. Coming right up to my own
40 days. Blue from cold mornings,
dark nights. My miner's light
reading in the tent, in the mothership.
Carrying my mother's story.
Went to war with it learning how
I might bring it to justice walking out.
I get how the back story tilts things,
turns responses to others
in the moment. Things come out.
Changes things. One storyteller--
Richard Swanson if you want names--says Jesus
became a leper after he touched the leper.
What do you think about that?
Jesus, now. Now. He didn't forget John
not for a minute. Uh-uh.
Think about that the next time
you ride into Seattle
in your Jackass SUV.
Este cinturón. El cinturón.
Cinturón de cuero.
Cinturón de Juan.
Compa de Jésus.
Tengo otro amigo. Eliseo.
Mexicano. Profeta. Profe.
en su camino. En sus palabras.
En su ser. Eliseo.
Hablaste, escribiste de Marcos.
Una cosa rodear a otra
Asegúrate de que la cincha está bien ajustada
y de que la silla de montar no se bambolea.
Yo sé, Yo sé.
El orador debió ceñirse el tema sin divagar.
Eliseo in the mountains, too.
Where I meet him. Everybody laughing.
Because of his language.
Eliseo Pérez Álvarez:
Cuentas a las comunidades marginada de donde venimos.
Mercancia canibalesco contra pobres.
Marcos enfoca su mirada en la vida cotidiana del Nazareno,
en sus obras liberadoras y en la muert de cruz
de su estilo de vida a favor de las personas
intocable, destituidas y anónimas.
Jésus el artesano pobre, hijo natural, con acento pueblerino,
adulto, sin esposa e hijos, en una sociedad campesina,
exiliado en Egipto, sin hogar propio, descendiente
de una familia disfuncionales, ...necesitaba escuchar:
"Tú eres mi Hijo amado, en Ti tengo complacencia."
Jesus with John in his head.
Jesus with John in his head.
Carrying the Baptist, walking.
The belt, el cinturón que el maestro me dió, was not a free gift.
The belt came through John, softened in the Baptist's water.
The belt came through the craftman's hands.
Se lleva la sabiduria de campesinos.
The belt is full of medicine.
Help me, friends, to buckle up.
19 October-- 1 November 2018