The Abbey Door

(A Week on Retreat)
The day began as always,when I awoke as planned;
accomplishing the usual within a timely span.
Ready, now, to greet the day the 4th of this July.
The hour of six had not yet come,I breathed a peaceful sigh.

I grasped the knob to leave my room,for Lauds would soon begin,
but much to my surprise, it seemed,I simply was locked in!
The knob turned as it always had so many times before.
But now the door held tight in place -and so I tried once more.

I prayed my weekend house-mate would hear my anxious plea;
pronounced through quiet solitudethe fact so clear to me!
Her efforts proved too futile,so to the “turn” she ran.
To where the portress surely would devise another plan.

As moments filled an hour – and many tools were tried,
the Sisters, Linda, Brother; pulled, and pushed, and pried!
With hinge-pins gone and “sledge” in hand the Brother slammed with might.
the jamb became distorted; yet the door remained shut tight!

I do recall my confidence in those I could not see,
but trust waned for an instant,when I heard ” . . . a ladder, . . . tree!”
Climbing through the window to reach the ground below,
was not what Mother had in mind; she said, “the door must go!”

Through new attempts, astonishment;”What held the door so fast?”
They had resigned to find more help to free the door at last!
Greg* offered his assistance,and with a crashing blow,
splinters scattered everywhere,the door held firm – Oh, no!!

With Greg’s determination the axe was finally seen,
a hand came through the door at last with feelings quite serene!
Release came in a moment,as liberators cheered!
I shared their laughter through it all; now smiled as each appeared.

Frustration swiftly vanished, hot tea was passed my way.
We were in time for morning Mass once more to start the day.
I cannot say I’ve ever known such care and such concern
by friends who barely knew me then; so much to be discerned.

Solitude and silence, as promised,came to be
yet memories still linger of the day they set me free.

*(This is not my husband, Greg.)

Date:  July 4, 1989