The National Catholic Review

He let the flies land freely on his face
as if they were not there, or he were not,
then ate his porridge with a simple grace
without an urge to move, or move to swat,
and in the wild untouched and timeless wood
he’d made his home years back unto his youth
he spoke of ways that I—and all men—could
approach the substance of our deepest truth.
But I of stubborn old unbending ways
had settled fancies, and still loved them too,
so left his side, though filled with newfound praise
for things that monks and martyrs tend to do,
and back within the city, thought it quaint
that, swatting flies, I could not be a saint.

Edwin L. Millet, retired after 35 years of teaching public middle school and high school in Florida and Illinois, now drives the school bus.

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