Terry Collett

Gold Star - 23,291 Points (13/12/1947 / LONDON)

From You Fall. - Poem by Terry Collett

The two catholic priests sat
in the Breakfast Room
off the refectory
in the abbey.

They looked up
when you entered
then continued
their conversation
about Dante
and you poured
yourself a coffee
and a small bowl
of Cornflakes
with a little milk
and sugar.

You sat down
and sipped the coffee.

There were prints
of Michelangelo
on the walls
and a crucifix above
and between
the two doors
that led to the
where the monks ate
three times a day.

The priests conversed
but said nothing to you.

Their words were uttered
in posh well bred voices.

One said
Few believe in Hell these days
and even fewer in Paradise
and those that do
have vague ideas
gathered from odd books
you find on airport
bookshop shelves.

You listened half heartedly
as they talked.

You wanted to ask
about the place.

Wanted one of them
to hear confession.

Maybe one
to give absolution
and perhaps offer a solution.

You could hear
the footsteps of monks
in the other room
getting their breakfast
of bread and jam
and black French coffee.

One priest laughed.

You never heard the joke.

The other guffawed loudly
in a girlish voice.

And the woman was seen
leaving by the back door
semi dressed and in great distress
the priest continued
And Father Denton
was never the same.

Then they were silent
and stood and smiled
and went their way.

You sat alone in the room.

The Michelangelo prints
reflected the single bulb
hanging above the table.

The Crucified seemed
above it all.

You would find some other
to hear confession.

To give absolution
from your fall.

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Poem Submitted: Saturday, April 14, 2012

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