It is that rough shell of his eternal absence
that you press between your palms
breathing out remnants of your daily grace.
Candle smoke, candle light, what small flame
has not been readily extinguished or
consumed in its entirety, passions
dashed in cold ceramic clarity,
smoke curling, ashes dancing,
hands making mirrors of each intention of the other,
held in reverent feverish belief.
The questions do not ebb as
all the inverse reasons feed you,
the silence, the brickwork solace
that chapel you can not understand.
Instead your hands enfold the mystery
that crowds the flickering light,
they honor the dissolution of everything
ever witnessed as right or true.
We end up ashes, wind up
rotting into these lapsed translations--
matter begetting other material concerns,
the dust we must all become.
We burn, regardless of the reason--
our least actions ought to acknowledge
this fire that assumes so much.
These empty hours, this hallowed doubt.