Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review


Academic journal article Anglican Theological Review


Article excerpt

Amid gleaming blond timbers of the

Bethlehem Monastery of the Poor Clares,

a wrought iron fence separates public chancel

from cloistered nave. Neon green Nikes squeaking

on hand-buffed floors, I finger the patterned gate

of thin branches that curl into sprouting leaves.

My camera, pressed through a gap, zooms in

on a haloed mosaic of Mary holding a sprig

with three blooms. Eyes fixed on viewscreen,

I don't notice the pale face concealed within

a white wimple until my flash bathes the pew

in which she kneels. Before I can apologize,

she disappears in a black-robed flurry.

In the gift shop, I peruse hand-made rosaries

in glass-fronted cabinets, remove a rough-hewn

card with calligraphy inked on the front-

Matthew 5:4 "Blessed are those who mourn,

for they shall be comforted. …

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