Chapter 29

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The Resident Saint of Kenilworth didn’t know how to pray. She didn’t know a Thee from a Thou, couldn’t decline the verb beseech, would get lost in a labyrinth and tangled in a rosary. She was never sure to whom her prayers were addressed, which pronoun to use, what was the proper name for the Divine. She could never know that her prayers were heard, her appreciation acknowledged, her petitions fulfilled. When she came across a meaningful prayer, she would learn to recite it; then, once recited, it would lose all its meaning.

She tried to pray standing up and sitting down, on her knees and whirling on her feet. She lifted her head and bowed it low. She raised her hands and folded them on her lap. She stretched out on her stomach, touched her forehead, and ate the dirt. She stretched out on her back and marveled at the stars. She twirled and danced and sat very, very, very still. She sang and muttered, davined and declaimed, supplicated and invoked, implored, petitioned and entreated. She spun prayer wheels and fluttered prayer flags. She prayed on mountaintops and in closets, in despair and in delight. Whenever she did it one way, she thought she should be doing it another. When she spoke, she didn’t know what to say. …


Keith R Wilson

Mental Health Counselor and Writer

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