Oh, Absalom, Absalom,
Announced by a throng of runners.
A chariot’s spectacle.
From crown to sandals, no defect.
And your hair, your hair, weighed like revenge.
Your charm was your decoy,
Your charisma, a magnet for the young.
Kissing their feet, you
Hid your agenda and
Stole their hearts.
They made you king, realizing not
Your treachery manifested itself
But pride goes before a fall.
You chanced upon your enemy.
You caught your locks in the forest’s terebinth.
You dangled like a broken bough until
Your heart was lanced, your body beaten.
They threw you into a shallow place,
Stones, a scant pile,
To mark your grave.
Oh Absalom, Absalom!
How dangerous to sow strife,
To root bitterness,
To erect monuments to
Would God your legacy were written in water,
Not on your father’s heart.
Jo has been an English teacher for over thirty years, and poetry has always been her favorite genre to teach. In recent years, her students' success with publishing has motivated her to relinquish her writing, and the experience has been rewarding. She is one of nine children born and raised by tenant farmers in Middle Georgia, and much of her poetry reflects that family heritage.
The Ekphrastic Review
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