Ash Wednesday: Ashes



The dance of life is a dance with death,

A two-step waiting a dread partner,

A free-style overshadowed by the slow waltz.

And we are poor dancers, flailing our arms,

Missing the beat, slipping around,

It’s like we’re dancing on sand.

It’s like we’re falling, face first, into

Ashes, grounded and gray,

Dust on our foreheads,

Ash-born crosses on dust-bound bodies.

Grounded in hope, rooted in Christ,

Waiting for death,

Rising to life.

She chews, he sips,

Drink for a king, food for a queen.

Filling? Not even for the fool.

An empty banquet on a broken table,

that we set again and again.

He eats, she sips,

It’s like we’re feasting on

Ashes, grounded and gray,

Dust on our foreheads,

Ash-born crosses on dust-bound bodies.

Grounded in hope, rooted in Christ,

Waiting for death,

Rising to life.

Mortality is a gritty existence,

A shifting of soil from one pile to the next,

A journey from dust to dust.

We clean up nice enough when we try,

But we can’t escape the umber.

The last thing we want is to remember are the

cinders.

The last thing we want is to cover with ashes.

The kingdom of God is not of this earth.

It’s reality flipped on its head.

Here strangers are fed and enemies held dear,

Broken vessels filled and mute voices heard.

Here a wounded Lord reigns, and a cursed cross saves.

The mark imposed becomes the grace received,

It’s like we’re elevated, lifted up to bear

Ashes, grounded and gray,

Dust on our foreheads,

Ash-born crosses on dust-bound bodies.

Grounded in hope, rooted in Christ,

Waiting for death,

Rising to life.

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