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Prayer at Altitude.

Prayer at Altitude

   Amen, I said to the rugged wind over the balcony.

   Amen to the frail wood keeping me alive
   over the view of the chasm between the creaking slats.

   What could be said, but Amen?

   I wanted my faith to be quiet and deep,
   seen by no one.

   Four A.M. gradually.
   The symandrone--a mallet on wood, pounded rhythmically.

   Later, bells.

   Monks floated through the haze and Nave like ghosts.

   Past the thinning dawn, past the Divine Liturgy ...

   My name summoned into the refectory.

   I despise all the food I ever put in my mouth.

   I eat less and am not hungry.
   I eat nothing and am not hungry.

   What is the sustenance of the pilgrim?

   Food of the obedient.
   Rickety heights.
   Letting go.

   A prayer to begin and end in Amen.
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Author:Samaras, Nicholas
Publication:Christianity and Literature
Article Type:Poem
Date:Mar 22, 2014
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