Pressure, self–imposed, dictated that I should not wait
To let the mysteries in those broken walls
Absorb me in their watchfulness;
And, in the stillness of the broken nave
Enable me to sublimate
Myself into that richness
Where it’s time itself that calls.
I could not wait; quite pointlessly, I could not wait;
In superficial haste, I gazed upon the falls
Of broken masonry, on open stairs,
Scantly read the legends on the stone,
Which, with time, might have let me penetrate
The deeper comprehension
Hid within those walls.
The simple altar, plainly crossed, and grassy chancel late,
I could not shrug aside the echo of the years.
The gentle joining of the silent prayers
Of novice, saint and Abbey businessmen,
Of youth and ancients come to supplicate
The God, whose peace could calm
Let me return, dear Father; please let me return
To bend the knee, encircled by these stones
Which watched their founders, centuries ago
Confide their confidence to you;
And then enclosed the frail and wearied bones
Of friars entrapped
Within an Abbey’s woes.
There, every type of prayer and praise has hung throughout the years:
And I, as ever, sanguine for your peace
Will stream my prayer into that boundless tide,
Rest my eyes upon that simple cross
Confess my part in mankind’s greatest crime
And you, still present there,Can all my cares release.
See images of Leiston Abbey Here
If you enjoyed this, you might also like to read of a visit to an even older (6th Century) East Coast UK holy site at Othona, Bradwell-on-Sea