The Ancient Modern

Together, Whispering /  Joshua Alan Sturgill

           A steep, curving path
strewn with willow leaves, leads
down from an unpaved road
to a bench by Saint Michael’s Spring

A gate (but long left open) and
a sandstone step are your signs.
From late Winter to late Autumn,
flowering vines will follow you

to where Saint Michael’s Spring
rises at the feet of Cottonwoods
massive and old. You hear them 
lean together, whispering

above the quiet clearing, where,
carefully circled with colored stones
to embellish her small simplicity,
a painted concrete Our Lady

greets her thirsty guests. 
Cinnamon-hue of her skin,
turquoise of her faded robes
are spread with tiny stars

each star a fleck of paint
chipped away by frost and wind.
You arrive in the afternoon
careful of the last, sandstone step;

You know the place by its wooden gate,
by Our Lady’s open hands, and by
an amber silencewhich playfully
the music of the water breaks

All poetry and supplementary material: copyright 2020 by Joshua Alan Sturgill

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