The Aged Priest Gives the Homily

A great blue heron stands on a stone pedestal
in the center of a small body of water.

On the bank a row of chairs,
each a replica of an electric chair,

and together we will go and sit
with our tablets on our laps, eyes forward.

And the bird will face us and begin
to teach. The lesson today is about tricking

the mind, about a flick of light, about
the studied movement of schools of fish.

You may wander off in thought to dividing
your parents’ things, to the hospital corridor,

the greed of others. But here in the shallow
water is where we learn focus enough to be

unerring, to be still. When it is time to throw
the spear, the whole of the body participates

like that of the man, strapped down and hooded,
when the terrible connection is made.

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