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Sunday, May 19, 2013

Autobiography - by Mother Mary Francis, PCC

Mother Mary Francis, PCC

A heart devoid of poetry is not a Poor Clare heart, I believe Mother Mary Francis said at one point, and for that matter it would probably not be a contemplative heart either! 


Part I:

While swallows dipped through my heart,
I tilted handfuls of sunlight over my hems:
Braid of fantastic gold. I told the doves
Poised on my shoulder: to be loved is to be lovely!

I sat and awaited Him,
Songs chasing down my veins;
Sat and awaited my death,
My skirts like waterfalls around me,
Morning in my hair
And all my bracelets waking
Into flowers,

Until He came. The low knock,
Oh, the moment! I did not sing, I was song.
The song was: Lover, Lover, it is I!
But the latch was not lifted. The footsteps
Drifted back like a sigh.

Part II:

A raven sits on my heart,
Listens to winds cry at the marrow of me.
My fingers stroke the unreality
Of air on which my lonely vigil feeds.

I kneel and await Him,
Tears rutting all my songs,
Kneel and await my death,
And rue my skirts which climbing torn,
Night lapping at my ankles.

My bracelets pawned to buy me faith,
Deliberate destiny burns beneath
My eyelids. Listen, raven, listen!
All that I cannot understand, I know!

And this is the moment; fingers on the latch
Of me, He asks who dwells here. Hoarsely comes
The final whisper: Lover, it is Thou!

Latch lifts. Footfalls, footfalls,
He enters in.

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