It was November of 2009
when I met the man. He was a surprise
even if I sensed the drumroll under
the current of his droll hilarity.
I was blessed to have chosen a front seat
because he did not use the rostrum or
if he did he often left it more than
he stayed in it. He was up front in all
he did. It did not take too long for me
to find out why he was a PREX speaker
and extraordinary described him:
he spoke like he were simply breathing words.
Because I was up front the chemistry
was plain. And plainer was the confidence
we must have unbeknownst to the others
shared: his jesting sent me rolling with joy
and learning. He was a paragon born
to my walking-wounded wandering soul.
And then he gifted me with compunction
as only Kempis can achieve to plant
in man. And made me foray into realms
I never thought would entice me: some good
the others caught between mediocrity
and shocking self-righteousness. Thank Mary
imitating Christ became a challenge
that did not end with the book he gave me.
It is not grace I ask if it means he
is not delivered from a malady.