We had spices
Sandalwood, myrrh and spikenard
Bought from the market before the Sabbath set in
Frankincense, balsam and pine
We pounded them well and mixed them with oil
Myrtle, cypress and spruce
The house so fragrant, I wept at the smell
Sandalwood, balsam and spruce
The odour to sweeten the smell of decay
Myrtle, spikenard, pine
Death has taken our beloved away.
Frankincense, myrrh and sandalwood
But when we arrived, the body was gone,
Spikenard, frankincense, spruce
And the angels of light talked of rising
Balsam, myrtle and sandalwood
And yes, looking back, it was wonderful. Truly.
Cypress and pine and spikenard
But all those spices – eighty pounds, already mixed
Myrrh, balsam and yet more spruce
Ready for a body that wasn’t there
Pine, cypress, spruce (again)
The need displaced by resurrection.
Sandalwood, myrtle and just a touch of balsam.
So who needs spices now?