Love is such a lovely word,
gracious, spacious, capacious to a fault,
embracing every blessed thing from those
little smiley faces we paste in on our computers,
to the cosmic force of space that holds, some say,
this universe together. At its best it can initiate our birth,
surround us at our death, and accompany
our footsteps in between. It can be, at times,
a mindless throw-away, a habitual expression
to close out a letter or a call, uttered, even muttered,
without thought or any real intention to fulfill.
At other times, this tiny – quite untidy – monosyllable
has transformed lives and even empires,
fostered deception and betrayal, prepared the way
for acts of classic heroism, even sacrifice of self.
And on one supreme occasion,
on a hill beyond a city wall, love took the form
of broken hands and feet, a torn and bleeding brow,
as God-made-flesh grasped – cross-wise –
all our fear and pain, age-old rebellion, lack of love,
and bore it up, and blessed it, and forgave.
All this to show what love can do, will do,
when lived and died and lived again.