Jesus and the Herd of Pigs

By SARAH M. WELLS

 

They scampered as if the devil

was herding them off the ledge,

each one following the others,

grass trampled black, muck up

to their perfect hams ready

for the knife, packing salt,

and market. It happened. I saw

the mud spray up their faces,

heard the whole pack panic,

charge, dash, splash and go under,

hooves kicking at the water,

pink snouts squealing and their eyes

rolling white. What will we do

with these two-thousand drowned

hogs, floating now in the twilight’s

silence? We stare over the edge

of the cliff, mud thick, boots

sucking and sinking, look back

at the man with chains and hands

loose along his sides, scars

like tributaries on his body,

standing calm beside the one

who did this. Look how much

this cost me. The meat is ruined

even if we fish it out with our nets.

 

Sarah M. Wells is the author of Pruning Burning Bushes and a chapbook, Acquiesce. Sarah’s poetry has been honored with two Pushcart Prize nominations.

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Jesus and the Herd of Pigs

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