Montserrat Revisited

Montserrat

Montserrat

Montserrat Revisited

 

November drizzle dismisses easy days

sky fog belts rocky towers

last tenacious yellow cleaves to sycamore

 

Wet cobbles cross the village

past sienna-plastered walls

to the arched churchly porch

 

High-window light falls on young faces

wide eyes, open mouths release ordinary voices

celestial in the stone space

 

Long aisles interrupted with chapels

virgin heroines long departed

kings, conquerors, redeemers

 

One new brilliant glass-doored space, punctuated with

crossed hands, crossed feet,

thorned corona

to enter, hands push against the wooden bar

caress the carved history of Catalunya

 

Gentle-voiced crowd edges around the perimeter

up sloped steps scooped out by each pilgrim’s foot

the black Madonna, centuries of candled

smoke and love shine on her face

 

Long promenade, black iron choirs

of fat, thin, tall, short,

red, green, white pillars

flame with hope

 

outside people are passing by

one more door

 

Red walls, shining wood floor, bright lights,

a room full of things

 

Two long white glowing wedding dresses

sequins, embroidery, gathered stitching

cover silk petticoats and sheer linings

 

black sleeves touch white silk

a very short suit of black wool

young brother to accompany the bride?

stranger?

 

brass hooks hold

small shoes

plastic flowers

infant’s yellow bib

summery straw hat

with silk flowers around the crown

 

 

tiny girl’s starched pink dress

white rickrack pristine

no dribbles from a meal of applesauce.

 

past the corner more hooks

a shelf with

baskets

music box

chest with dark red velvet lining

Round another corner

more flowers

toys, photographs

crutches

 

sorrows

gratitude

 

 

A sign says

everything

all the objects

are left behind

 

and may yet be reclaimed

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