Poem 382 – The Priests and the Girl

She
waltzes, she
dances, she
Sees him through the
door, she
stops and he
smiles and with-
-out a word he
joins in her
dancing that
dog-collared
man, for-
-gets all his
vows as she
takes his
hand, and
now they are
waltzing, he
chooses to
sin, why
should he not
love if love
is what he’s
in? Well
nearby a-
-nother dreams,
Dreams of her,
Confesses,
Pleads with his
God, the
God that he
Shares with the
Waltzing
man. He
leaves, goes to
find her, and
there sees his
friend be-
-tray his high
office, no
chance to a-
-mend, the
true priest is
angry, he
raises a
crozier, he
beats his friend
who wished to
leave for
fear his
God would de-
-spise him for
loving in
twain, both
woman and
divine – is
that such a
strain? The
true priest be-
-lieved so; the
floor was
stained by
blood that was
holy un-
-til the re-
-frain of
waltzes and
beauty took
chastity a-
-way. Now
she who was
waltzing, she
raises her
hand, and
strikes down the
true priest who
could not
stand the
love of her
life being
but a
man, she
stamps and she
kicks and she
tears at his
eyes until
madness con-
-sumes her; her
eyes tell her
lies; that her
lover’s still
living and
so for her
crimes she
waltzes a-
-lone, a-
-lone she will
die, for
men can have
one love, their
God or their
wife, for
so it is
written of the
holy life.

***

Dear readers,

This poem is the first time I have attempted to write a work in waltz-time in a long while, although I distantly recall doing so some time ago. It is the climax of a story I imagined while listening to the beautiful third movement of Schubert’s Mass in E Flat. The combination of sacred music with a waltz-like feel, to me, somehow conjured this story up. It is longer in my head, but this is by far the best scene – the young lady dancing with a young man, who has been told not to love, and is then killed by a jealous rival who cannot face betraying his vows. I do not think either is in the wrong – in the early church, priests could marry, and I hope that, should the Catholic church continue on its current programme of reform, they will be able to again.

Kind regards,

The Hapless Neo-Romantic

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