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The Man from Samaria

July 2004


The whole world lies

On the road that goes

Through the hills to Jericho.


Now bombs burst daily in Baghdad,

And Afghanistan’s hills are cratered and sad,

And years ago the doves all flew

From the olive trees of Arab and Jew.


Once a man was attacked on the Jericho road,

And mugged and robbed and left for dead.

Who carefully raised the bleeding head,

And carried him back to food and a bed?

The righteous, they went cleanly by,

As white as snow,

For that’s the way the righteous go,

Eyes to the front, they calmly ride,

Keeping away on the other side.


Who paid for his care in the local inn,

In such a businesslike way?

A man who just happened to be passing by,

From whom no good was expected.

In theory he was meant to be

For the man on the road an enemy,

But he stopped and knelt and lifted him up

And carried him in so tenderly.