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Sport 39: 2011

At Binham Priory

At Binham Priory

for Sue

Lily … swaddled Jesus … monkey-lion
We trail hands over smooth oak,
admiring poppy-head pew ends,
the mediaeval rood screen,
brave St Catherine of the Wheel.

Echoes sanctify whispers here:
commonplaces sound like prayer.
Once, we would have lit vigil candles
for our lost daughter and mother.

Now, it seems that need is over.
There’s a restfulness between us—
happiness simply to exist
and to take this place in time.

Later, we huddle at the cold hearth
of An Old Warming Room.
Black marks on beige stone
from centuries ago prove its use.

This is where we would have met
as sisters, hiding from the winter,
sitting close enough to be reminded
of life—its carvings, saints and flames.