Mary Magdalene – a poem by Rebecca Guess Cantor

Mary Magdalene

You know me.
I am long hair
and bare breast.
I am a flower—

a rose, a bough
with thorns.
I am creasing fabrics,
jewels, and parted

lips, a book open
upon my lap
or yours, a skull—
cold in my hands.

I am at the base
of that cross
in the hills
near the sea.

Fragrance, savory
and pure—I am
marble and silk,
pearl and myrrh.

I am your saint,
your whore,
a veil, a shroud,
your red, green,

blue. I am your
flame and fire—
penitent, defiant,
here. I am here

where you’ve
brought me
and molded me,
made me.

I am your creation,
your work of art,
and now you think
you know me.

Rebecca Guess Cantor’s first book, Running Away, was published last year by Finishing Line Press and her second book, The Other Half: Poems on Women in the Bible, is forthcoming from White Violet Press. Her poetry has appeared in The Cresset, Mezzo Cammin, Anomaly, Two Words For, Whale Road Review, Anomaly Literary Journal, and The Lyric among other publications. Rebecca is the Assistant Provost at Azusa Pacific University and lives in Fullerton, California.

1 Comment

  1. I have never felt particularly moved by Mary Magdalene until reading this poem. This opens a window for me–a window of connection, perhaps. Thank you so much.


Leave a Comment

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s