I wanted to write about Patrick:
How he lay between Ireland and home,
between captivity and destiny,
in a desert land,
Famished, having refused wild honey
because it had been offered
to unknown gods;
How his second great dream, unforgettable even in old age,
sat upon him in the darkness as a great rock,
a demonic force immobilizing his limbs,
But not his heart,
which cried, "Elias, Elias!" -- Was it
"Eli, Eli!" he groaned, or a petition to Helios?
Or does that matter? For when
the splendor of the rising sun fell upon him,
and lifted the weight, the pressure from his body,
He knew from whence came such help.
I wanted to write about Patrick,
But blazing in my mind's eye, unforgettable these months later,
is the sliver of orange
that cracked the sky at midwinter dawn.
Waiting beyond hope on that heavy grey morning,
my heart pounded at the unexpected flash
that lifted my gloom, my resignation,
And not just my heart stirred, but something else,
as a child might leap in the womb
at the greeting of a kinswoman
Bearing the imperishable Light.