St. Martha

for Jennifer
After Lazarus died and was raised and Christ died and was raised, Martha
died. Which is more in keeping with the natural order of things. Sure, 
her reputation survived her, the myrrh bearer, the middle child
that the Middle Ages resurrected, her virginity and her soup ladle still 
In fact, in icons she brandishes the latter, a short and sometimes gilded oar.  
And also tames dragons, pinching their windpipes underfoot, ankle angled 
as if each beast’s hot throat were nothing worse than an organ’s carpeted treadle.  

Only Christ could fluster her.
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