The Priest

March 21, 2012

Before the crimson veil,

Betwixt the flesh and heavens, lips trembling,

thou stands.


Terror does climb aloft

To those golden places of fire and gossamer smoke,

silk belaying the clouds, parting trumpet voice.


Be this your own fear

… or for thy people?


O, thy crooked race!

Beleaguered, stiff-necked, stone-hearted,

Their iniquity heaped upon iniquity.

O thy people!


And what be it that, yourself deeply indebted,

may appear hence pleading for them?


What sacrifice have you?

O my people!


Shoulders draped in white, whitest of whites,

Bejeweled circlet, leaden like many burdens,

heavy upon thy brow,

Soot and dusts of ashen penance smeared over your beating heart.


Thou were chosen, yes thou,

scapegoat for their sins,

to enter the solemn, neglected and empty place,

beyond death’s ancient veil.


Fear grips yor soul,

crippled, genuflecting before a Justice too just to bear.


What sacrifice have you?

O my people!


For I delight not in rich fare,

No fattened-loin, sodden or marbled pink,

First-fruits, thy libations, resins,

and hearty cereals are unsightly unto me!



Thou fasting days, new-moons, prayers and sacrifices

account as nothing.

Vain cries I will not hear.


Quaking, fist striking your breast,

soul immersed by godly fear,

a crumpled, feeble prisoner

Beneath the divine floods, waves that pummel and rise.


Say you:

“No pleasurable offering I have,

Nothing I present aside sins and earthly gifts unfitting.

My God, what I possess is knowledge

that Thee suffers our eternal stain, our disobedience, our plight,

How we break, again and again,

from your outstretched hands!


Grave be a Father’s despairing over His lost children…

Immense toil, O God, over this awry creation,

O Thou everlasting tears and greater, most-greatest love!



I offer,

unto Thee:

Thine own embittered mercy!”


And this, Almighty God overlooked,

His own sacrifice impassioned, granted to these undeserving creatures,

A love so perfect as His bestowed…

And in it, saw no fault.


Priest before the Ark of the Covenant.



March 9, 2012


The swarthy angel perched

upon my bedside

raven wings ashroud,

whispered to me in that dead tongue

of devils and priests:

Veni, veni, venias

ne me mori facias.

A forgotten song

serenade for the dead

sung beneath archways,

where I sought my beloved.

in antiquity’s chill.

Roses glow

like blood-drops sprung out of the earth.

Their thorns outstretched

rebuking hands

leave a silent pin-prick

against my flesh,

telling me

my love lies here not

not within this dark place.

Once more clarion,

I hear the haunting psalm

its shadowy linger

resounding the fretful antiphon

of bygone years lost:

Veni, veni, venias

ne me mori facias.

Gargoyles are Awesome

March 8, 2012

Spires, descending snow spirals,

twirling, twirling cast down.

In wintry twilight, there land

upon a stone-clad, grinning crown.

Horns and all, ears silently prik’d

stares the greyest gargoyle.

Unfazed by months of gusts, gushes, weather and wear.



Towers, dirty windows, mist

rising, rising smothered round.

In spring morn, there stands

beside his clutched paws, wings curling to see

the farthest height.

Untroubled by years of sleet, splash, wet and tear.



Beams in summer come, blocked by autumn shadow,

dancing, dancing thrown aloft.

Stares he alone.

Cracks and all, claws perched soundless

catching midnight rays with moon-washed eyes.

Unmissed by ages, by those walking below, beneath and out.



Voices, vespers, plain-song,

calling, calling timely beyond.

Listens he without reply

for the gargoyle’s answer is quiet watch.