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Amnesiac

Tendrils of sunlight scatter through the rose window,
Stained glass hues caress the darkened mahogany bureau,
Whilst the confessor, with hands as trembling aspen leaves,
With a guilt soaked brow and sullied fingertips, heaves
From behind the lattice, through which devastating admissions
Render the pious priest distressingly omniscient
And paint vile images as fifty-nine beads are counted,
For divine judgment is dearly, tremulously wanted,
But soundly both parties depart into respective bedrooms
And dream terrible things whose tormenting vestiges loom.

The stable is illuminated as moonlight gleams through,
No manger to be found at this accursed rendezvous
For the cloaked rider astride his snorting, inky steed
Acclaims not salvation, but retribution in his creed,
And his possessed hand follows his creed as the reins
Are guided towards the sickly sinner down the tidy lane,
And the detestable throat is swiftly slit with his blade
Before the filthy mouth can scream and thus betray,
So the judge and his mount escape across the gravel,
Hoofs against the cobblestones like ever-righteous gavels.

Ascending golden rays slither through the frosty pane,
Alighting on the priest’s face, drowsy and mundane,
As he gently awakens from a heavy, peaceful slumber,
Only to be jolted into haste by the alarming concern
Of another murder among the church’s dwindling body
And of the mourning family awaiting his guarantee
Of their beloved’s place in the jeweled city above the clouds
And his company on their travel to the burial grounds
So he somberly arrives, kindly complying and embracing
Through the crippling, choking fear of a rampant assassin.

Shadows sweep across the earth opposite its sun’s glare
Through the holy water and the requiem and the prayers,
And soon the passengers and coffin and baggage
Are loaded one after another into the carriages,
While the anxious priest rides behind with teeth worrying
At his nails, and fingers at his chest desperately scurrying
For the chain that seems to have been forgotten
Back at home, in the bedroom, or washroom, or den,
And anxiety exacerbates this most unfortunate occurrence
For poise and innocence and God are too far for reassurance.

The horizon spews forth a plethora of glowing hues,
The evening cools and warm doors usher them through,
Where relatives sob and console through a salty deluge
Then turn to the priest, voices with gratitude infused,
After which hands are clutched and grace is said
While the priest sits sickened by a stomach full of lead,
For his cherished chain remains distressingly absent
From its proper place, laying close, sound and content,
Yet when he awakes the next morn to resounding cries,
At his pounding heart fifty nine bloodstained beads recline.

Day shatters with a magnificent cascade of rosy beams,
Against the claustrophobic carriage walls they stream,
With solemn, mourning passengers jostling down the road,
And the priest with evidence of murder beneath his robes:
A rosary whose disappearance has not been forgotten
By the bereaved family whose link to justice has been stolen
By a frightened, baffled, guilty amnesiac who may not be
As innocuous as would seem a devout priest like he,
For when the coffin is reached and the face recognized,
The priest begins to choke on his own unconscious lies.



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