I STOOD THERE MCMLXXI | By: Terry Collett | | Category: Poem - Religous Bookmark and Share


Semi light
in the abbey church
red light altar end
a lone monk
in silent prayer,

in silentio
Dei loquitur,

I climbed the stairs
to the passageway
to my cell
the Grand Silence in force
after Compline
until after Mass
and wanted to speak
to someone but couldn't,

di dubbio è l'opposto
della fede
the Italian monk said
as we worked
in the abbey library,

Mrs Shepherd wanted me
to kiss her inner thighs
so I did
as she asked,

to fall in love with God
said Augustine of Hippo
is the greatest romance,

shall I make the grade?
said George in the cloister garth
after the office of None
as we sipped tea
and ate cake
I feel the cold so much
I said I thought
he would but he
left soon after,

ouvrir votre cœur
à Dieu the French monk
said to me
as I helped him
in the abbey gardens
selecting vegetables
for lunch,

she kissed me once alone
in the castle when other
visitors went off
with the guide
to the next room
warm lips
maybe tongue,

wenn Sie zweifeln
was dann ?
the Austrian monk said
to doubt is to think
I said
I think therefore,

except our own thoughts
said Gareth quoting Descartes
there is nothing
absolutely in our power,

I tolled the bell-tower bell
for the Angelus
and the angel said unto Mary
and the sound reached out
to ears and hearts,

Dom James was desperate  
for a smoke but did not
yield to it but pretended
a cigarette between fingers
and exhaled
cold morning air
and I know
I stood there.

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