Pater Ait

The dying Poet stands behind the lectern

Ready to give his retrospective

– what a thin veil for deathbed reading! –

Like a passing, ancient God

Prepared to fade away

With the echoes of his last words

And praises of his last congregation.
But then the torture begins:

“It all started when I was nineteen,”

He says,

“And had to write this…”

“Then there was a nine year break before this…”

“And a twelve year gap until this…”
Breaks, gaps, releases,

Like moments of soaring between painful beats of the wings:

He mumbles through the transitions

Like a foolish brook babbling over stones,

And belts out his poems for you –

Booming, sonorous –

Like the call of the waterfall as it descends the cliff.
He funnels the fragmented wisdoms of his life – the pains of his life, the tales of his life; the trials, impotencies, and battles of his life,

And spills them before you

In a steady stream –

Like the stream from the mortal wound

Of a hemophiliac God,

Hemorrhaging upon the altar –
And you applaud.

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