The Prompt: Hindsight is 20-20—What if you had the power to rewrite history? You do.


One of 15 creches I’ve made using material I’ve found on the beach


would have married the girl and had children
and been less overt with his teachings
of peace and love too radical
for a world immersed in their opposite.

He would then not have changed the world, perhaps,
but  only lived in contrast
to that power popular among those who needed it
and effective in keeping those adverse to it quiet.

If he had married the girl, the world would probably have ended up
pretty much how it has anyway, but he might have had a different ending.
Grown old, had his cronies over to talk about the good old days,
converted water into wine and served them loaves and fishes.

Mary Magdalene would have danced for them in their memories,
and all of his grandchildren would have listened in awe
to hear the tales of how he walked on the water,
bade Lazarus to rise from the grave.

He would shush his cronies as they started in
with tales of how he smashed the souvenir stands
and threw the money changers out of the temple.
Not stories for young ears not quite ready to learn revolution.

And all of the ill done in his name might have happened anyway,
but at least he would have had a good life.  Would have suffered less.
And some other savior might have found a way to save the world
that would have worked.

Note:  It has been so long since I’ve been able to pingback that I’m posting this even though I wrote to the weekly prompt today instead of this one!

For a more remarkable poem that might have been the prequel to this one, but was actually written first, go here.

14 thoughts on “He

  1. Pingback: Blogmanay | Murder & missadventure

  2. Anton Wills-Eve

    I’ve just found this piece, Judy. Your command of language and obvious breadth of knowledge and vocabulary are striking and way above the average found on wordpress. I really enjoy reading your stuff even if I do not always agree with it. This for instance misses the point. He had to suffer that we might be saved. But then we have to have our own opinions or we would be in a mess ! Anton


    1. lifelessons Post author

      Hi Anton,

      Thanks for commenting and giving both your appreciation and rebuttal. I will give you mine hoping it does not at all register any disapproval on my part re/ your comment. For someone who regards the tales of the Bible as allegory and metaphoric lessons, it was not necessary for anyone except ourselves to die for our sins–and even then I’m not so sure it makes much difference in what happens afterwards whether we have led exemplary lives or ones that have created more horror and sadness in the world. I can accept reincarnation in a sense and as a writer have sometimes had glimpses of what seem like other lives, but I am both a skeptic and open-minded about matters of spirituality. I was a church-goer for 18 years and then went on to try to discover what I believed on my own. The point of my piece, from my perspective, is that it is a shame, in terms of his own life, that it had to end so soon. The other point made is that socially, there seems to have been more evil than good done in the world under the auspices of formalized religion. The Paris Bombings are a case in point, as were the Crusades, the Spanish Inquisition, the settlement of most of the new world. Now Eastern and Middle-eastern religions seem to be taking their place in the queue of those spreading terror and death in the name of a belief that started out to be more about love and caring. Phew!! Such a diatribe on my part, but not meant to be anything more than an answer to your comment. I hope you keep on reading. I’m following your blog, as well. Best, Judy


  3. Pingback: Faith? | lifelessons – a blog by Judy Dykstra-Brown

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