Rapture Deferred

I woke that morning, I recall,
Surprised somewhat I woke at all;
And out my window, plain to see,
My street was smoky-ruins-free.
In fact, so fine a morning shone,
My coat I had no call to don:
The larks still sang, the hens still perched;
No sulphur rained,  no zombies lurched.

I walked on through that wrathless dawn,
     Alive !  Alive and springing !
I gaped for lack of demon-spawn,
     Alive !  Alive and swinging !
I fed the ducks, I named the clouds,
I mingled with bewildered crowds -
We wore no coats, we wore no shrouds,
     Alive !  Alive and singing !
Our lives would never be the same,
That day that Jesus never came.

I gawped that morning, hollered out,
Surprised I had the breath to shout
I danced with gnats, I waltzed with trees,
I hugged the rain and kissed the breeze.
I cried with strangers, wept with folk,
I stuttered ev’ry word I spoke;
I didn’t care, I couldn’t mind,
I thanked the Lord that I was left behind.

I ran on through that wretchless day,
     Alive !  Alive and wheeling !
I laughed for lack of human prey,
     Alive !  Alive and reeling !
I leapt, I skipped or simply stood,
I didn’t care for ought or should -
I sang and sang because I could,
     Alive !  Alive and feeling !
Our lives were ours !  There was no shame,
That day that Jesus never came.

Martin Choules

If you have any comments on this poem, Martin Choules  would be pleased to hear from you.