It was a Sunday  

morning, full of cake and coffee

hour, children silenced

for a moment by sugar,

if not by the lingering

spirit of prayer;

I remembered there was something

I needed to ask.


He was standing

halfway back down the nave,

alone in the pew,

straight and still.


After a minute,

or two –

I had forgotten the time –

he turned; I had already

retreated. Slowly,

because of his heart,

he rejoined the congregation

of the living, having,

I imagined,

negotiated his annual armistice

with the rest.

About Rosalind C Hughes

Rosalind C Hughes is a priest and author living near the shores of Lake Erie. After growing up in England and Wales, and living briefly in Singapore, she is now settled in Ohio. She serves an Episcopal church just outside Cleveland. Rosalind is the author of A Family Like Mine: Biblical Stories of Love, Loss, and Longing , and Whom Shall I Fear? Urgent Questions for Christians in an Age of Violence, both from Upper Room Books. She loves the lake, misses the ocean, and is finally coming to terms with snow.
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