A Quarterly Journal of Contemporary English Language Haibun
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June 2009, vol 5 no 2

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Diana Webb


Sacred Energies

Its centre towered from a green expanse beyond the town, a local landmark, site of a December solstice star. Most of the masonry has fallen down by force after a long dereliction.

Spaces through which mats of light once spread out at intervals along the floor of the semi-circular extended corridor, at first blocked off, now just a memory; symmetry slowly sacrificed for a bleak beauty in the crumbling shell where hordes of those deemed unstable sought a cure. In its own plot apart, now overgrown, the roof graced by a row of pigeons, only the place of formal worship, built to accommodate a thousand, kept totally intact.

“What's madness but nobility of soul at odds with circumstance.”*

asylum chapel —
yellow spires of mullein
upright in the sun

* From Talking with Angels by Gita Mallasz.

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