Mary was the link to our friendship.
I was the third and he the fourth member
of the male contingent of her Legion
whose praesidium was Our Lady of
the Annunciation. His was a short
stint. Mine lasted a little bit more than
his exasperation with the way things
were handled in the sorority-like
blue army, yet headed by a brother,
more misunderstood than his efforts to
make his intentions bear fruit. He was strong-
willed and short-fused to the other’s basic
individuality, as alien
to his psychology as a stricter
purveyor of a more demanding art.
He was of a discipline whose rigid
rules hardly match the supposed solemnity
of a unit seemingly harassed
but taking it in stride for Mary’s sake.
He lashed out and, too frustrated to beg
an apology, chose to meditate
on his lonely advocacy. I feared
the consequences of his decision
and prayed he reconsider and he did.
Once a legionary, he turned to her
Son. Walked miles to kiss His Quiapo dwelling
and surrendered all his disappointments
and suffering to the Black Nazarene.
by Abraham de la Torre