Behind barbed wire In the county jail Woman recites poetry; Declares she’ll die. Bodies young, old Form lines. Summoned to penance, Knowing they’ll die. Bodies in lines Words in lines Dust and grime Ash to ash Dust to dust A friar smudges symbol into brow after brow. The texture: touch, trust. We are blackened by death. We gasp in prayer. We sigh line breaks. We ache as children, as symbols on pages. Each offering: poem, prayer, body -- Living Sacrifice. Love in flesh is pierced by thorns, killed on a cross. Then and now. We deny ourselves So we don’t deny Him. We remember our death.