Cool candy-colored panes
filter feeble Sunday light.
Dim glimmering altar dressings
under candles, flicker-lit,
who whisper of times darker
in caves seeped with the smell
of burial rags; death's incense.

Voices in prayer, trembling
with fear of God
and man.

But a child does not know this,
of relics and requiems;
stirrings of the past.
He lacks their understanding.

The vestments are bright,
their bearers, cheerful.
Voices in pleasant song
know not fear
nor ecstasy.

Still such silhouette whispers
as may be found in candle-light
caress the boy's ears
with gentle intensity.

The priest's own drone
fades behind flame murmurings
"This is my body..."
which was given up for


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