Monday, May 01, 2006

The Gardener #2 - Mary

So I went into work on Sunday fully expecting to have to fight my way through crowds of people. You know, mobs of followers and disciples waiting to pay their respect at the tomb; scores of centurions keeping them at bay. It wouldn’t have surprised me if I’d got there to find a riot had broken out. To be perfectly honest I wasn’t expecting to get much work done.

But when I did get there – nothing. No crowds, no guards, no barriers… no dead Messiah. Just gone. The stone had been moved and the body… vanished. Just an empty garden. Apart from one woman…Mary…standing there…weeping. It was as if her whole world had just caved in around her. Her master – her saviour – the man who she loved more than life itself – was dead. And now even his body had been stolen.

Or so she thought before he popped up and tapped her on the shoulder.

He starts off by asking her what’s wrong. Now at first she doesn’t recognise him – she thinks he’s me. She even asks him, you know, “have you seen Jesus? Have you moved him? Just tell me and I’ll go and get him” you know, I mean she is desperate. And he’s just standing there in front of her and she ain’t got a clue. Now I’ve probably been unfair on the poor girl recently, taking the mick for not twigging that it was him and all. But she was emotional, she had tears in her eyes it would have been blurry… And if I’m entirely honest, it’s not as if I recognised him either. I mean, he looked different somehow you know? And be fair you hardly expect three-day-old corpses to be prancing around gardens asking you questions do ya? So I can’t really blame her for not knowing it was him.

But then he said her name. Just that, nothing else, he just said: “Mary”. And she knew. She knew it were him. You should have seen her face – it was like she’d just been punk’d or something – you know? She was on another planet. It was amazing. But then he says to her, he says “don’t hold onto me coz I’ve not yet gone back to my father. But go and tell everyone else that I’m back and I’m going home.

Now this is the weird bit. Coz if that had been me, I’d have stayed. I wouldn’t have gone off no matter who told me. This guy’s been dead all weekend and now he’s back? I’d have…clung onto his leg or something. But she goes. And not even begrudgingly, she’s skipping off down the road, she’s full of it. Her master has told her to go and she just goes. And I just don’t get that, you know? She’s just got what she couldn’t dare to hope for. And she leaves him – ecstatic – because he tells her to. I just don’t get that.

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