JERICHO ROSE, Songs from the Wilderness
These poems are told through the eyes of several New Testament characters. The title piece is a prose poem of about 6,000 words, related by Mary, the Mother of Jesus, as she struggles to reconcile the human and divine nature of her mysterious child. The Gospel tells us that 'Mary kept all these things and pondered them in her heart' and I've tried to capture a certain reflective wisdom as she begins to piece the jigsaw together.
The Jericho rose, or Resurrection plant, is a bit of dry, unattractive tumbleweed blown hither and thither about the desert. When it reaches an oasis, it begins to blossom within minutes and within hours has become a viridescent green. The biblical promise that 'the desert shall blossom as the rose' probably references this plant rather than the species we tend to imagine. It evokes images of craving thirst and living water.