nuns live in stone temples: they promise
to live those slow virtuous lives, white as the snow
they survive on what they find. What gifts the forest
gives, it gives beneath the gaze of emerald shadows.
They walk on worn-in tracks and to fill the hollow
sound of the hollow woods, they murmur hymns and prayers,
and each sound echoes into the frantic billow
of perfumes, sounds, colours, resting in the air.
And here the perfumes sing soft as the blushing pears
they pick from the trees, green as the oboe
at dusk, and clear and vast as a cloud-filled sky
corrupt and illuminated by bright white flares
that leave in their wake sweet amber smoky pillows
that fill the fat nuns’ heads until their spirits fly.