Monday, August 22, 2011

Watered By the Spirit

My graduating cohort from Seattle Pacific University has self-published an anthology, Archipelago.  One piece each from the dozen of us.  There is some great writing in here.  I hope you'll consider buying a copy.  Here is the opening to my essay Watered By the Spirit:

Jesus was thirty years old when he plunged.  He sought out his cousin, John, a desert dweller who ate locusts and honey and preached to a good-sized crowd to repent of their sins before he dunked the converts underwater.  An Armenian icon depicts Jesus’ baptism like this––Wearing nothing but a loincloth he stands waist deep in an oversized jar of water meant to be the Jordan River. Fish nip at his feet looking like swim fins at first glance.  The halo over his head is crowded with the hand of John the Baptist, the arms of his future cross, and a dove descending directly below a few fingers that point barely noticed from the top of the frame, as if God is directing the bird to the right man.  John, who is standing on dry land, rests his palm on Jesus’ forehead as if checking for a fever.  Two angels stand behind John, their enrobed arms extend toward Jesus as if ready to dry off the wet and shivering Beloved by embrace.   

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