by Sheila Petre

“Evil when we are in its power is not felt as evil but as a necessity, or even a duty.” —Simone Weil

They never meant to do him wrong.
They meant to do God right;
To offer to the frothing mob
The oil of peace that night.

They used the means they knew to fuse
The cross, the sword, the kiss.
Theirs was a motive burning clear,
As mine, in penning this.

We turn to God to hear applause,
For surely He is pleased
To tell the rabble-rouser killed;
His synagogue appeased?

We hoist the Torch of Truth aloft,
And death comes on inside
The day we form the crown of thorns
And Christ is crucified.

Sheila lives with her welder husband Michael in a split-level house in PA teeming with children (nine) and stories (countless). Contact her at to ask her about her new poem book illustrated by Hannah Lehigh.

Photography by Kenneth Godoy

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