For You

by Mitali Perkins, reprinted with kind permission of the author 

 

for you,
whose Hand made salty water swell
and burst upon the sand, shaping mountains into shells,
here is the hand that slapped you.

how dusty, clumsy, weak
this hand, twisting thorns into a crown for you,
whose Head imagined panther, peacock, pomegranate,
here is the head that screamed with rage
when Pilate brought you forth.

how frail and dull
this skull, these eyes, this mouth of spit for you,
whose Face set like flint to see
my fist
my sneer
the crooked iron sharpness of this heart
for you.