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Teresa's Last Foundation

    All of it is here.
            —Juliana of Norwich


She follows broken twigs,
matted grasses, outward signs
that point to an altar

dim with gold in a town
cut in two by a river.
She will leave in Burgos,

the last of the Carmels,
a veil, a letter,
an alpargata—her shoe

made of rope and canvas.
Like an aging ballerina,
she leaps with less force,

but there is the skill.
She must rest, chooses
a red wooden bench—

with tassels!—to sit on.
All of it is here: the white
pullet at her feet,

pecking for grain. Green
flames of poplars
soaring like steeples.

The mule with velvet eyes
who will carry her to die
in Alba de Tormes.


Elisabeth Murawski

Arts & Letters

Spring 2013


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