Portrait of Jesus at Six A.M.
This morning I woke up with a brush in my hand, determined to deconstruct the image of a mono-toned man who only reflects one side of salvation.
The hieroglyphics of hierarchy have bleached your blemishes
With despotism and domination since before I was conceived
But this morning, it will change.
This morning, the silenced voices of my own ancestors will dance
Through the hues of your hair.
This morning, the persecuted presence of lost populations
Will thrive through the tones of your countenance.
This morning, the cries of the Cherokee Will ring through the satin of your garb, And the voices of bigotry Will be silenced through the shading of every lost seeker.
This morning, the beauty of night and noir and noise will eradicate all limitations of my salvation and my canvas will capture the beauty of each color in the world.
This time, the truth and hope and glory found in the every drop of dew and in every morsel of majesty will come alive on this easel.
This time, the splendor of my savior will seep into sources it has never seen because the brush I use has been erected by the fingers of fluid faith.
This time, I will paint your face the color of water, Your skin the hue of a night sky, Your body reflective of each person who has ever seen beauty in the moon.
Poem used with permission of author. She is a senior majoring in Religious Studies at Gettysburg College, Gettysburg, PA. Image of "Jesus of the People" used with permission of artist Janet McKenzie - www.janetmckenzie.com