Sunday, May 9, 2010

St. Jerome

His animal mind
parsed by grids
of lattice and tile.

The table edge sooths
a cassock's tormented
drapery into planes.

Dust ascends the sunlight
to touch the cold
surface of the window.

Twelve points of horn
suspended by hemp
spatter candle wax

in sea horse patterns
about the Bible stand.
Over his shoulder

the standing crucifix
reads, with craning,
exhaustion, stories

that crack its heart.
He thumbs the pages
staring out to space.

His thoughts circle:
What is the difference,
patience and faith?

Either you are young
and ardent, or still
wait and hope

the lion asleep beneath
the table awakens
while you're still here.

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