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Three by Anne Herbert

Jesus died. God said, If you want in three days I'll make you be alive again. Jesus said Sure but why me. God said Nothing special I offer this to everyone who dies. Jesus said Just a minute.   God said It's too late to back out now.

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People don't behave well in church on Easter.   Half of them haven't been there in a year and sitting still for an hour is not easy.   TV has commercials and driving has stop lights.   Standing up for hymns is not enough.   In my church you can't even say amen.   People cough and shift and sound like they're getting ready 'to leave through the whole service.   I know how to settle them down.   Tell them to pretend they're on the bus going to work.   Ignoring everyonething around them, staring straight ahead, not moving at all til half a block before their stop.   All those blank minds — really, the bus is the place to give them the message.   "Death isn't required, folks!" But the people on the bus wouldn't hear it.   They've already rolled the stone back in front of their eyes and told the angel to go home.   That's why really all the respectable non-believers are restless on Easter, listening to all these embarrassing outdated things.   What if it were true?   Five thousand bus rides to a good job are going to look pretty silly if it turns out that life is about being alive.

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So here's Peter standing by this imitation I'm sure not even cultured pearl picket gate stuck with a young sign scrawling Welcome Home to the Universe and being naturally curious and I won't add in my usual considerable pain 1 try to get through offering dollars, marks, amusing antidotes, purebred custom tailored yankee ingenuity with a five year service contract, stock options both ways and an all expenses paid dinner for two at a complete living room suite overlooking the latest in self-adjusting color TV but he won't take or tell me the price of admission, says I'm already in.