Who are you—who, against the hidden river,
were able to escape the eternal prison?”
he said, moving those venerable plumes.
…Dante, Pugatorio, Canto 1, 40-42, 52-54
Then he replied: “I do not come through my
own self. There was a lady sent from Heaven;
her pleas led me to help and guide this man.
I saw you standing midst those who in purgatory dwell
singing makeshift words of another’s conjured rhymes
lies that evaporate before entangling hearts and minds
what you still pretend to be yesterday and tomorrow
as a child clinging to hopes from mommy borrowed
the thin shades cannot survive your heavenly skies,
not a million could survive the power of your light
to lead you to where you know you are called to go
to be brave enough to pass through your own shadows;
for the reflections of others will never keep you close
the shadows that follow others when they leave you
what you mistake for love just ’cause it hurts the most.