Traffic lights absolving pedestrians’ haste
Genuflecting off curbs
Against the red and green commands.
Doing penance for their pace
Unaware of a descending October evening
Darkening red bricks
Littered with damp leaves
Causing tires and feet to slip.
Workdays always surrender
Some to a chilled wind whipping around the circle,
Powerful enough to be a new task master
Issuing demotions of sniffles
For forgetting a coat,
At times, gentle enough
To be lazy with a sweater.
Racing to their parking spots
Entering streets crawling to a wider sprawl,
The church in the circle’s womb
Birth the sound of bells through alleyways.
Saint Anne’s motherly voice
Tolls for the lonely and unwed,
Ringing as a leaf falls.
No one notices the girl in her office.
No notice of her at all
Bathed in a golden light.
A host raised above after six o’clock
Her window a chalice
Within a red brick tabernacle,
No notice of her or Annapolis at twilight
Or even of the bells that rang minutes ago,
Might as well been some October evening three hundred years or so,
Same colors, red bricks, and the human feet that slip
On the damp leaves.
Or of someone like me under a streetlamp now lit
A moment among the movement,
Long enough to see her put on a sweater
And her forearms become relics in the sleeves.
Turning off the light, emerging in the twilight,
Entering the weather
And then the church in the circle’s womb
Perhaps to pray for a man
Who writes these words on wafer for her to consume.
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