Thursday, June 25, 2009

St. Francis in Belfast

We float through second day fog, through the holy music of helicopter blades.

"Someone must be moving arms," St. Francis says, "The lacerations have healed, but there are battle scars."

He leads us into the candle lit trench. We watch arms moving, palms penitent in prayer.

For saints have hands that pilgrims' hands do touch. And palm to palm is a holy palmer's kiss.

"I have made peace with Muslims," he says, "I have made peace with Muslims, and yet I couldn't stop Belfast from turning on itself."

St. Francis settles behind us as we sink into the wooden pew. In the golden light, people come and go. We begin to cry.

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