Buh-thump, buh-thump, buh-thump go the hearts around the table;
each life passing a bowl,
taking a spoonful,
nursing a wound.
The hearts are strung, however unlikely, together on God’s rosary.
God prays us as we sit together, Her soft hands caressing us, one human-bead
to the next, massaging our hearts and imperceptibly leaving us
sitting closer together on our proleptiam string.
It is together that the strength of a group heals the solitary wound.
No wound tells itself to heal. Wounds do not exist like that.
No, wounds tend to want to linger, even enflame.
Wounds are biological narcissists.
But the health which surounds the wound. That is what conspires.
The word conspire means ‘together; to breathe.”
The health of a body conspires, breathes together to give health
to the wounded place and so too, in a soul,
so that the wound abandons its task,
taking its handle-bar mustache and its black cloak
to other places
where nothing conspires against its evils.
Asked about my best moment on this planet, I waited for the answer
like a wartime mother waiting for the postman, only to find it was a priest at the door.
Her hands wringing, seeking a warmth neither could muster alone.
And then the answer arrived like a medieval page, announcing a message to the village.
“Sitting silently with others.” I said.
And then I could see, emerging from the Avalonian mist, a beating heart
which was all life in nearly a pound of meat.
We sit together, friends, fiends and enemies.
Seven friends at a dinner, five pounds.
Or ten friends at a campfire, seven pounds.
Or two friends deepening, a pound and a half.
Or four hundred friends worshiping, three hundred pounds of heart-thumping.
We plot together by together breathing, hoping,
longing for what we think we want.
And then we find that Hell is an eternity of getting it.
Whereas Heaven may be little more than a good hearth with hearts beating together.
A prolepsis of love while the candles melt on the dinner table.