The bare bones of glories past
Of abbots and priors
Discalced footsteps in prayer
Scapulared monks clack rosary beads
Singing mea culpa to the sky
Desecrated altar bare
To the midday sun
Bleached now to eternal beauty
Clerestory windows open
To the winged flight of birds
Grand crossing floor now grass
Green softness under foot
Nave once holy
Now a foxes lair
Choir echoing pater nosters
From an era long gone
Monstrance blessing
Host raised no more
A rare embracing of exposed bones
Shivering in the cold
I raise my eyes to belfry
Where tolls no more a bell
I turn my back and walk away
Overawed by the graciousness
Of the ruin

Tim Alderman
(C) 2014


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