National Poetry Month 16 – Harrowing

The question of the descent into Hell

or Sheol, or Hades

on the surface seems academic.

“Did Christ actually go to free the souls

of the righteous?”

Was He there in the nebulous dark

emanating light to the countless millions

dead before the coming of the Son;

Adam and his beloved Eve

the Patriarchs,

Moses and Noah and the second sons of creation?

Did the Lord come to spark the hearts of those

who had begun to despair that God had forgotten them?

The drama begins when Christ crushes Satan underfoot.

That glorious fool, that lesser-light He had made

still a pretty thing, dainty in his own way,

but now utterly defeated.

Satan a shadowshow, a pantomime of rebellion

a butt of a joke no longer funny.

Surely he beheld the God-son in something like terror,

if a fallen angel can feel terror:

“I am nothing now in the face of the victory you have won!”

Could he call for pity there in the pit?

Would all the once loosened demons fall at the feet of Christ

bemoaning their faithlessness and folly?

The human souls looking upon the scene of rout

their hearts (spiritus) exploding with pride at the fact

that they had kept the faith and now were rewarded

with infinite love and infinite forgiveness.

They called loudly to Him

“ALMIGHTY GOD, HAVE MERCY ON US”

and He did!

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