Saturday, June 18, 2016

Saints With Their Roses

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.

( from Endymion) John Keats

saints with their roses 
beckoned you back then
beyond their tissue guards'

repose in antique books;
or traced on funeral cards
in gold, consoling lettering

replete with lilies against the aquamarine;
cream candles behind their votive glasses gleamed;
burn slowly time, we whispered to God

and rose hastily with the school bells' breeze.
these are my natural shrines you felt
treading the dew wept grass and the shadows shine

with April even now

and the healing fountains under the
apple white moonlight, receding;
I may plead for beauty still

at the innermost altars,even held against my will
or taken suddenly from home by social authorities
who know best,they deem, but at whose behest

it will not matter when all souls return
to the family bower and are
the flowers themselves,

gardenia gleaned,
radiant beyond reprisals;
in Heaven, where this is not allowed.

mary angela douglas 18 june 2016