• F.W. Hume

April 15, 2019 Notre Dame


My queen, I ache for thy ravaged body,

But have no fear for thy soul.


Time and tragedy will take their toll

but thou, lady, remainest as always blest and beautiful.


Thou art the spirit of our home,

The throne that supports the weight of your child’s might

The grace and mercy that might save us all.


Even before standing so tall and light,

Buttresses flying, rose windows painting joy along your nave,

Thy power churned unseen in the depths of the river

Translating, transubstantiating, alchemically altering your subjects.


Passing through thy sculpted arches and archivolts,

We find thy varied realms expressed through us,

The Royal and Municipal, Sacred and Profane,

Agape and Eros, Eros and Thanatos,

All in living glass and wood and stone.


Each time we passed to pay hommage,

With family and friends, or colleagues and strangers,

We left a little of ourselves and took something more away

Becoming less the foreigner, less the provincial, more the Parisian.


And secretly acquiring the slow knowledge that thou art

The Asian girl in the tight skirt that walked la rue St Denis

And the Queen of Heaven.


Thou art ours and

We are thine.


Last fall taking taking family to visit Notre Dame and the Quartier Latin

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