On Having a Tour of the Cathedral
Some days your ideas have just the basic, bright colors of parties,
the feel of ordinary foods,
and on sick days your rapture is just a slither of innards,
your prayers, water pouring over the same grounds.
Maybe it’s better here when the wind blows in from the left,
if it can’t come straight down.
Projections over the south portals
rattle in this weather pattern, the stone heads
nicked from a wrecked temple disgorging carved acorns,
veined with plant stalks, worked back
into ancient spackle and held until they dried on.
So numerous, we give them our barest notice,
as in an ardent and continuing wind
we forget it and tend to other things.
To the old women kneeling with rosaries –
stop calling Jesus a fruit.
To Mary, rinsed of ashes, nuzzled by kittens,
be glad the cloak of all the old pictures turned to stone.
The upright folds are arranged as still throats,
keep festival sounds and the errant groan
and the long sigh from flapping out of the sheet.
What keeps in the columns keeps,
and if the wind pries it out, we call it wind.