They covered the head of Jesus
with a wreath of thorns.
The wreath turned green
and roses bloomed:
scarlet as blood,
pink as dreams,
white as the news
for the expected salvation.
© Stoianka Boianova ,BULGARIA
Bulgarian bard Stoianka Boianova has presented her poem ‘PHANTASM’ on theme “Thorns“ from Biblical point of view . The poem deals with the cruelty meted out to Jesus Christ with a thorny wreath by the Roman Soldiers before his crucification and the miraculous transformation of the thorn into flower.
To have a better understanding of the poem, we have to delve deep into the Biblical story of the birth and death of Jesus Christ. According to that story, the first parents of human being Adam and Eve , while they were in Eden Garden, tasted the fruit of the forbidden tree violating God’s order and hence they were banished from Eden to earth as punishment.
In the New Testament, Jesus, God’s Son, came to earth to reunite man with God through the ultimate sacrifice : his own life. Accordingly , after his birth he began to teach human being the right path to salvation. But as Plato said, „No one is more hated than he who speaks the truth“. The teachings of Jesus went against the then prevalent Judaism . As such he was charged of violating the Sabbath law , threatening to destroy the Jewish Temple. So the Sanhedrin Court tried him and sentenced him to death.
The Roman Soldiers made a Crown of Thorns, wreath of thorns that was placed on the head of Jesus Christ at his crucifixion, whereby the soldiers mocked his title “King of the Jews.”
The poetess narrates the effect of the thorny crown on Jesus as well as on the human race as a whole. The purpose for which Jesus was born gradually began to be fulfilled. Turning of the thorny wreath „green“ is the symbolic replacement of violence into peace . Blooming of red rose into „pink “ further heightens the idea of peace. The last point is on the salvation of human race – the main purpose of Jesus’s birth . Yes, Jesus succeeded in his mission. Ere his crucification, he left the message of love and peace among his disciples , though only a handful in number . But soon after the Ascension of Jesus , his messages spreaded like wild fire and with the passage of time , the people accepted him as the Messiah. Now man could expect „salvation“ following the path shown by Jesus.
The poetess has succeeded in recreating the whole scenario of the crucification of Jesus and its aftermath in just 32 words arranged in 8 lines.The words employed are as simple as can be , yet pregnant with meaning and relevant to the theme .
Kudos to her mighty pen !
*©® Sahjahan Ali Ahmed