(In The Christian Century, April 4, 2006, Tom Long wrote about the awkward, "dangling" original ending of Mark, translated literally, “To no one anything they said; afraid they were for." That may very well have been intended to send us back to the beginning of the Gospel. The poem's title comes from the old PBS children's show, Schoolhouse Rock. Thanks to my daughter, Leah Barton, for remembering this phrase.
"Ephobounto gar" it ends,
As strange an ending you'll find anywhere,
But take Mark at his word, who sends
Us back to Galilee to find him there;
I mean, the "for" connects us to
The start, because the women did not go;
They were afraid and told no one,
But Mark still has the Lord to us to show.
It's where he started out, Mark says,
Go back to the beginning, chapter one;
You'll find him where they found him then,
Now, this time, put yourself where he'd begun;
Pretend you're one of them who saw
Him by the Sea of Galilee pass by,
Pretend he calls - what do you do?
Does he, for you, move earth and sky?
Pretend in synagogue you hear him teach,
An honest preacher tells the truth!
Pretend he makes someone you love brand new,
Your hope is as it was in youth.
No resurrection scene does Mark present,
Instead, He'll meet you where you are,
Not at his tomb, but where you walk in life,
Not way back when, but here.
Scott L. Barton
When the sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, and Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices, so that they might go and anoint him. And very early on the first day of the week, when the sun had risen, they went to the tomb. They had been saying to one another, “Who will roll away the stone for us from the entrance to the tomb?” When they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had already been rolled back. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man, dressed in a white robe, sitting on the right side; and they were alarmed. But he said to them, “Do not be alarmed; you are looking for Jesus of Nazareth, who was crucified. He has been raised; he is not here. Look, there is the place they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going ahead of you to Galilee; there you will see him, just as he told you.” So they went out and fled from the tomb, for terror and amazement had seized them; and they said nothing to anyone, for they were afraid.