Today’s Poetry

For Passion or Palm Sunday, I thought I would post something I wrote about a decade ago. It started out as a poem and evolved into a song. I’ve posted the lyrics to the song first followed by the original poem. May God’s mercy shine upon you as it did millennia ago when he sacrificed his sons for all humankind.

The Good Thief

I was a very good thief. The entire world belonged to me.
Your purse was ripe for the picking. It was my profession, not a sin. Not to me.
Your darkened home was my domain, for I held the master key.
You see, I practiced my craft like no other. I was a very good thief.

It was never about the money, no. It was the thrill that so appealed.
The darkness was my ally, there was nothing I could not steal.
Like the darkened homes I raided. My soul consumed the light within me.
And masked all that I was. I was a very good thief.

One day I was caught up. Righteous men prevailed.
My luck had finally run out. My dark secret was unveiled.
Justice would be passed. All I had done would be shown to the world.

They hung me on a cross with yet another thief.
A brother of the art. Another man with secrets to keep.
Between us was a carpenter. A man without the stain of larceny.
And yet, his punishment was more brutal than mine, this very good thief.

My brother taunted this man. But He had only pity for us.
His compassion extended to us both and went well beyond that cross.
As he was pulled apart He forgave his tormentors and then he turned and looked at me.
And in His eyes I found forgiveness from God for this very good thief

This man had done no wrong. Had committed no crime.
But I deserved my fate for all I’d done in my lifetime
I asked Him to remember me when he came into His Kingdom and He promised to take me to paradise.

I was a very good thief. The entire world belonged to me.
Your purse was ripe for the picking. It was my profession, not a sin, for I was free.
That carpenter became my advocate, my judge. I was redeemed.
And in the end I stole my way right into heaven. I was a very good thief.

The Good Thief

I am a very good thief. There is nothing I cannot steal.
It is my profession. Nothing is safe from me.
Your darkened home is my domain.
Your purse, your ox, your children, your wife all were within my reach.
All that catches my eye is mine to possess.

Maybe it’s the danger. The thrill of getting caught appeals.
It is all I’ve ever known. It came so naturally.
The darkness is my ally.
It hides my deeds, my guilt, my shame. It masks all that I am.
It has always consumed the light. It possesses me.

One day I was caught up by righteous men.
My luck had run out. My secret revealed.
Justice would soon be passed
All that I have done would now be shown to the world.
I would be on display an example of recrimination.

They hung me on a cross with yet another thief.
A brother of the art. A citizen of darkened places.
Between us was a carpenter.
A man without the stain of larceny. Without the stain of sin.
And yet, his punishment was more brutal than our own.

My brother taunted. Out of pain he lashed out.
But this man had only pity for us.
His compassion extended beyond the cross.
As he was pulled apart He forgave those around Him
He turned to look at me and in his eyes I found peace.

This man had done no wrong. Had committed no crime.
We thieves deserved our fate for all that we were.
I asked him to remember me
when he came before God. He promised to take me to paradise.
He became my advocate, my judge, my redeemer.

I was a very a good thief. There was nothing I could not steal.
It was my profession. Nothing was safe from me.
The darkened world was my domain.
All was within my reach. All was mine to possess.
And in the end, I stole my way into heaven. I was a very good thief.

Copyright 2012 and 2014 by Jose Antonio Ponce