Holy Week Haiku
Rachel Bauman
Minister of Community Life

My spiritual practice during Lent has been to post one poem each day on Facebook. I started this practice a few years ago as a way of intentionally grounding each morning in beauty and setting my mind on something more spiritually generative then the anxiety-producing news feed. Each year, I add more challenge to this practice, e.g., choosing a different poet each day, never posting a poem twice, seeking out poets from different parts of the world, diverse identities, etc. This year I briefly considered (i.e., for half a minute) writing some poems of my own to post. I quickly abandoned that idea as too hard, time-intensive and scary. I read poetry; I don’t write poetry. I don’t know how to do it. I’m sure I wouldn’t do it right and good gracious what if I looked like a fool on my Facebook feed! But the idea kept kicking around, a Holy Spirit nudge saying, “Come on, you can do it! Don’t take yourself so seriously. It’ll be fun!” 

So here it is, the last week of lent, and in honor of our “Lovers and Fools” theme, I’m choosing to be a fool for love. I love poetry, the Holy Week story and you so I’ve written a haiku for each day of Holy Week to share with you. These are based on the Gospel of Mark’s day-by-day narration of Jesus’ last week. I re-read the story and composed a haiku based on what feelings and images came to me this time around. It was surprising how much more I gleaned from the story when trying to distill my insights into 17 syllables. I’ve indicated the day of the week and corresponding scripture reference in case you want to read along and compose your own holy week haiku. Holy week blessings to you!

Sunday (Mark 11:1–11)

king on a donkey;

subversive parade. Shouts of

“save us!” echo still.


Monday (Mark 11:12–19)

wanting to find food

barrenness and greed instead

fig tree and temple


Tuesday (Mark 11:20–3:37)

I watch you, Jesus

word fencing with the powers,

refusing to be defined.


Wednesday (Mark 14:1–11)

alabaster jar

breaks — profligate anointing

shows us how to love


Thursday (Mark 14:12–72)

Took, blessed, broke, gave:

bread and wine, body and blood.

Eucharist means thanksgiving.


Friday (Mark 15:1–47)

the kingdom of God

clothed in fierce and tender love

hanging on a cross 


Saturday (the space between Mark 15:42 & 16:1)

synonyms for wait:

watch, remain, abide, linger

tarry, expect, rest.