Johnathan Barrett

The Alabaster Jar

(a fallen sonnet)

This jar is your blistered feet
on fire. This jar is my hair falling
on flames, a chorus of gasps, my sleeves
soaked in kerosene. This jar is my tears spilling

on the floor darkening your sun-tight skin.
This jar is broken bits of alabaster
and ribbons of nard in your hair.
This jar is your eyes: two dirty suns

disappearing beneath the horizon.
This jar is aloe, myrrh, strips of linen;

the musty scent of your empty grave.
This jar is the mystery of your grace.

This jar is my bare scabbed knees,
a constellation of tar stars scarring my heel,

the lisp of my lips kissing your feet.

Jonathan Barrett lives in Kansas City with his wife Megan and three sons. He works for a small community bank. His poems have appeared in numerous literary journals including The Literary Review, North American Review, Notre Dame Review, Phoebe, and Subtropics. More recent work is forthcoming in Kestrel and Poet Lore.