David Thornbrugh

Monastery Mountain

The monastery on top of the mountain
is so remote no one has reached it
in three lifetimes. Nights,
we see candle light moving
from window to window.

Up there, say the villagers,
the monks live on prayer,
so close to God they comb his beard.
One blind monk
at the center of the hive
contains the Kosmos in his meditation,
keeps the stars alive.
In the flooded basements
of the village,
drowned donkeys turn
like compass needles,
twisting direction
out of darkness.

Come morning,
we will start climbing,
following the trail
of very long,
very gray

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